GREAT BARRINGTON — When Jake Hunker hung out his shingle for Jake’s Barber Shop at 87 Railroad St. in Great Barrington, it was, in many ways, a leap of faith. The shop where he had served customers for several years had closed abruptly, and he had to make a career decision. “I could have rented a chair at another shop,” he said, “but it was time. I was going to focus on the future and open my own shop. Big risk. Big dreams.”
As Jake’s Barber Shop commemorates the start of its fifth year in the community, Hunker is marking the moment by not only thanking his robust client list for giving shape and substance to that dream, but by being supportive of Railroad Street Youth Project, a local organization that encourages focus and commitment for others. RYSP is a Great Barrington not-for-profit organization that encourages community teenagers to meet, learn, talk, and focus on the future.
“For the week of Tuesday, March 30 through Saturday, April 3, we’ll donate $5 from each haircut to RSYP,” he said. “I am proud to support their mission … to support the youth of our community and help them explore their full potential and become equipped to meet the challenging transition to adulthood.”
Appointments for RSYP-benefiting haircuts from Hunker can be made online through booksy.com. Hunker noted that upwards of 80% of his bookings now come in online. Customers can also call (413) 717-4238 for an appointment.
Railroad Street Youth Project is a dynamic nonprofit organization helping young people bring their ideas and inspirations to fruition and discover their place in the world. Its services and programs have evolved to meet the changing needs of local young people. The Youth Operational Board continues to fund youth-inspired projects, run ongoing mentoring and apprenticeship programs, provide sexual-health programming through local schools, offer job training and career counseling, and staff an active drop-in center that provides counseling, mediation, referrals, and advocacy services for young people in need.