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Ebony Magazine Highlights Md. Barber's Philanthropic Work In Community

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ)—This month a local barber is being featured in Ebony Magazine for his work with the homeless and less fortunate.

Monique Griego has more on how he's helped thousands of people turn their lives around.

By trade, Robert Cradle is a barber. But over the years his tools have a done a lot more than just trim hair.

"It makes me feel wonderful that I'm giving them confidence," Cradle said.

Cradle opened up his first barbershop in Odenton back in 1991.

There he met a representative from a local homeless shelter and realized a major need in the community.

"Their population didn't have access to regular grooming," he said.

Cradle decided to help and started a collection box.

"I would get the money together and then I would send a barber down or invite a group from the shelter up to my shop and we would cut their hair," he said.

His charity work soon blossomed into Rob's Barbershop Community Foundation. It's a nonprofit that raises money to build barber and beauty shops inside organizations that help the less fortunate.

And over the past 12 years, he's helped around 7,000 people, including Marshalene Wells.

"You feel like a different person. You know, it just makes you feel good," Wells said.

Cradle recently caught the attention of Ebony Magazine.

His organization is being featured in its August edition.

Cradle's fourth and latest barbershop project is at the Light House in Annapolis.  There he hopes to use haircuts to transform even more people.

And because most of his clients are down on their luck, the payoff of helping them get back on their feet is his biggest reward.

"They come back and they're excited they got the job, talk about how good they look. Especially the women come back and let you know how much they really appreciate it," Cradle said.

If you would like to find out more about Cradle's organization or to donate, click here.

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