SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) -This year hasn’t been easy for a lot of people and for the last few months we’ve been highlighting people helping people in our community and being Suncoast Strong.
Derek’s Salon in downtown Sarasota has been around for four years and owner Derek Donovan says with all that’s been going on he wanted to give back to the people in the service industry that have been hurting so much because of closures.
“I think it’s good to give back to the local people that serve us as well,” said Derek’s Salon employee, Victoria Kirkendall.
A little black card giving access to free hair cuts for restaurant and bar employees in our community.
“We wanted to kind of give back and we knew they were kind of getting back into the work so we wanted to make them look good,” said Derek Donovan.
And so far Derek Donovan’s salon has handed out 300 free haircuts.
“It’s important to kind of give. I love this town. This town has been very good to me,” said Donovan.
The service industry holds a special place in Donovan’s heart.
“I was a bartender for 12 years. So I was bartending while I was going to school to do hair,” said Donovan.
So when the pandemic closed out bars and thousands of Floridians lost their jobs, he felt for them.
“I just hope people go out and support. Over tip your bartender, over tip your waitresses,” said Donovan.
Donovan hopes this small gesture will allow people in the service industry to feel their best as they head back into work.
“I just think it’s great that we can come together and help each other out,” said Kirkendall.
They’ve had several people come in to claim their haircuts already and Donovan and his team say it’s great to see their faces light up.