Roselle councilman gives back to his community

ROSELLE, NJ — As students and parents gear up for the beginning of the school year, expenses can really pile up.

New clothes, shoes and a laundry list of school supplies can be a financial stress for many parents. And let’s not forget about those back-to-school haircuts — a necessary expense that is often forgotten amid all of the clothing, book bag and school supply drives.

Enter Roselle Councilman Reginald Atkins, who is back for his second free back-to-school haircut initiative.

Atkins told LocalSource that he was inspired to start the program because of his own experiences as a parent. “As parents, my wife and I remember and understand first-hand the cost and time-consuming ordeal it can be getting kids ready to go back to school,” said Atkins. “Every child deserves to return to school looking fantastic and feeling their best. Let’s face it, the first day of classes can be hair-raising without worrying about having a bad hair day.”

According to Atkins, the haircuts are given by Shawon Spearman, owner of The Hair Lounge barbershop in Roselle, along with his team of haircutters, who volunteer their time to give back to the community.

Atkins said that the community response has been rewarding. “We have received a very positive response from the community,” said Atkins. “Parents are thanking my wife, Dr. Cynthia Atkins and I, for the innovative idea.”

And, according to Atkins, the turnout has been great, with about 50 kids coming to the event. “This is a give back program,” said Atkins. “With the rising cost of going back to school, increasing tax and the economy we live in, there’s a need for this program and other initiatives. It’s a win-win for everyone.”