Hope And Healing: Buzz Boxx

(WSVN) - Can something as simple as a haircut change your life? One South Florida organization thinks so. 7’s Katrina Bush shows us how some local entrepreneurs are creating quite the “buzz” in tonight’s edition of “Hope and Healing.”

You’d never guess it from the smile on Michael’s face, but he has faced some tough times.

Michael Caraballo, founder of Talent 4 Change: “My parents were drug addicts. I was born in Puerto Rico. Coming to the U.S. was my introduction to hell, because the first community I moved into was the projects.”

He remembers being picked on in school because he couldn’t afford nice things.

Michael Caraballo

Michael Caraballo: “People tend to frown and look down on you when you don’t look right, don’t look cleaned up.”

So he’s helping South Florida kids clean up, one haircut at a time.

Michael Caraballo: “Well we’ve had plenty of kids that would tell us how important a haircut is to them. Maybe they didn’t want to go to school because they’re embarrassed.”

But Michael doesn’t run a traditional barber shop. This is a mini mobile shop inside a shipping crate called Buzz Boxx. And it is creating quite the buzz!

Kids earn a free haircut by doing good in school or helping their community.

Tina Brown, Overtown Youth Center: “We will use this concept as another way to tie in incentives.”

This box is headed to the Overtown Youth Center, but the goal is to have a Buzz Boxx at organizations across South Florida.

And these kids aren’t just getting a haircut. The barbers double as mentors.

Ladon Quivette, Barber Love Barbershop: “I go from being a barber to Auntie to Mama, so those are the types of reactions I get because I give them that. I’m genuine.”

Felecia Hatcher, co-founder of Code Fever: “You never know, just a random conversation or a haircut can turn into so many things.”

Today is Clifton’s turn in the barber chair. The 15-year-old lost his dad when he was 2. He says it’s been hard not having a father figure in his life.

Clifton Ross, 15-years-old: “When I was younger, I didn’t have really good common sense because I always liked to play around, get in trouble.”

For him, sitting in this chair, talking to someone he trusts helps him see how much support he has around him. And Clifton and Michael believe, if you feel good, you do good, and they hope these boxes continue to create a positive buzz.

Clifton Ross: “Everybody in my community loves me and helps me out. I guess that’s what really motivates me, too.”

The Buzz Boxx team recently took first place in a Philanthropy Miami competition! Congrats to them! And Buzz Boxx is just one of the mentoring programs offered by the Talent 4 Change organization.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

Talent 4 Change

Buzz It Forward

Overtown Youth Center

Barber Love Barbershop

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