Who likes dope fades? Who likes top-notch coffee? Who likes seriously good humans? Well, there’s a special spot on Pako waiting for you! The very first The Streets Barbershop has opened in Geelong West, and we’ve got The Streets Barber working there as one of the head barbers.
Renowned in Melbourne and Geelong, The Streets Barber gained popularity for his selfless dedication to cutting hair for the homeless. Nas Sobhani AKA The Streets Barber did a complete one-eighty on his life and went from battling severe drug addictions to becoming a passionate barber. He’s been using his talent to help others turn their life around by spending his days off on the streets cutting hair, with the hope of a #CleanCutCleanStart. The Streets Barber, with a following of over 90k on Instagram, has now settled in Geelong, where he’ll be continuing his work and service.
The trendy barbershop echoes Rastafari vibes, with a banner of Bob Marley hanging on the wall. Upon entrance, you’re greeted with a sleek coffee bar, and the grey walls match with the indoor greenery to create an industrial feel. Aside from the fly design and the chill genuine staff, The Streets Barbershop is distinguished for another reason: They’re throwing it back to the good old days when barbershops were a community hub, helping people find solace in the shared experience of their daily lives, supporting each other through the good times and the bad. The Streets Barber’s idea of profits don’t come from dollars – they come from the creation of a community that cares for each other. Their mission is to be a hub of social action, as well as Geelong’s most poppin’ barbershop. As well as providing barbering services, The Streets Barbershop is also your local stop for next-level coffee, with the shop’s manager and award-winning barista, Sara, alleviating your caffeine cravings while you’re there.
Nas doesn’t just want to cut your hair, he wants to make sure every client is okay, feels good, looks good and knows they’ve got a friend in him. It’s about taking that 45 minutes or so, not just to perfect a skin-fade, but to establish genuine connections and bring people happiness.
The vision of the barbershop is to have a number of The Streets Barbershops scattered around the world, all dedicated to the one goal of service. “It’s not about providing a service, it’s about being of service,” says Nas, “and this is why I have decided to join the team at The Streets Barbershop and partner with the directors, who have brought me on as a barber and an advisor/ambassador on the barbershop’s ethos and direction, and I can’t wait to show everyone how The Streets Barber mission is supported by The Streets Barbershop.”
Service to the community is an integral part of The Streets Barbershop X The Streets Barber movement. Barbering has given Nas a sense of purpose, which really helped him find his path back to sobriety. “Service has given me so much purpose, ’cause it gives me a reason for wanting to wake up knowing that I’m needed. I think if everyone looks at themselves like that, knowing they can be of service, then they will always have a purpose. And there’s no reason why anyone shouldn’t feel highly about themselves.”
Before starting his employment with The Streets Barbershop, Nas brainstormed what it truly means to be of service. “I realised service doesn’t mean giving something for free or doing something for free. Service is about whatever you do, whoever you meet, benefiting. It’s about making sure someone feels better. And you can do that in a place of employment, or in a place of volunteering.”
Nas explains that the mission of The Streets Barber (not only the shop – but as the barber first and foremost) is based greatly on his faith: “Growing up as a Baha’i, it was always about serving humanity through whatever avenue possible, and my avenue is cutting hair.”
Work and service don’t always have to be two separate fields, explained Nas. You can perform work in the spirit of service, and that’s what The Streets Barber aims to do with this new professional crib. One project starting soon involves using The Streets Barbershop to train at-risk youth in barbering. Though they can’t give out legitimate certificates (’cause, you know, they’re no academy), Nas hopes to open a door for youth to experience barbering. If it’s something they find a passion in, it could steer them in a potentially life-saving direction, as it did for Nas.
With a passion in serving humanity at the helm, Nas will now be stepping off the streets momentarily to serve in a different way, by teaching inmates at Barwon and Marganeet and Karreenga prisons how to cut hair. With many barbers now heading out on the streets to give back to the community, Nas is excited and grateful the movement has inspired others and is now trying a new approach. “I found that a lot of my clients on the streets were actually inmates,” Nas explains. “And my mum always used to tell me ‘you need to focus on the solution, Nas, don’t focus so much on the problem’. And the problem seems to be the homelessness epidemic. One solution I could think of was going into the prisons and teaching guys how to cut before they go back out on the streets. And if that could potentially save one person, that’s my next journey.”
Check out the stylish new store, get a trim, grab a coffee, and get to know Nas and the guys. You never know how they might inspire you!
The Streets Barbershop is located at shop 3/112 Pakington Street, Geelong West. Appointments via www.thestreetsbarbershop.com or head to Instagram to follow and support the movement @thestreetsbarbershop
Written by Naseem Radmehr