“We are wanting to have stylists and barbers come together and create awareness ... for autism,” said Elaine Lord, founder of TASB and publisher of Recognition with Style magazine. “And then the clients are just donating from their hearts and they’re helping out. ... Most all the stylists are having their clients come in and then they’re getting 50 percent off. ... We’ve got stylists that have been in the business forever [and] they don’t need anymore clients. Then we have stylists that are just brand new and they’re needing to build up [clients] so they can give half-price off and try to get clients to come to them. So we’re [catering] to both situations.
“... It’s starting to get out there to where people are understanding it. We’re the heart of the community and we’ve always been able to give back. Both stylists and barbers, we love to do that. So this is one way where we can all come together and give back. And our clients, they want to help. They’re very helpful with it.”
During the Cut-a-Thon, hairstylists and barbers will be lending their services throughout Georgia as well as Alabama, Florida,Kansas, Indiana, Maryland, New Jersey, North Carolina,Pennsylvania and South Carolina. In Cartersville, participating locations posted on http://wecutforgood.wordpress.com/ are The Powder Room Salon, Jordan Scott Salon, The Hair Shop, Perfections by Jeanette, Lee’s Barber Shop, Reformationz and Melissa & Co. Salon.
Proceeds from the Cut-a-Thon will go toward Autism Speaks and three other autism-related organizations. Last year, the benefit raised $7,500.
“We had been involved in it before,” said Meredith Warren, owner of The Powder Room Salon, which will offer half-price haircuts Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon. “... We don’t really have a close relationship to the cause other than just trying to help out. ... We have a lot of clients that do, so being able to [help] is why [participating in the Cut-a-Thon] is important.”
Autism — a complex developmental disability — generally materializes by a child’s third birthday and affects their ability to communicate.
According to Autism Speaks’ website, www.autismspeaks.org, “Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and autism are both general terms for a group of complex disorders of brain development. These disorders are characterized, in varying degrees, by difficulties in social interaction, verbal and nonverbal communication and repetitive behaviors. With the May 2013 publication of the DSM-5 diagnostic manual, all autism disorders were merged into one umbrella diagnosis of ASD. Previously, they were recognized as distinct subtypes, including autistic disorder, childhood disintegrative disorder, pervasive developmental disorder-not otherwise specified (PDD-NOS) and Asperger syndrome.
“ASD can be associated with intellectual disability, difficulties in motor coordination and attention and physical health issues such as sleep and gastrointestinal disturbances. Some persons with ASD excel in visual skills, music, math and art. Autism appears to have its roots in very early brain development. However, the most obvious signs of autism and symptoms of autism tend to emerge between 2 and 3 years of age.”
The website continued, “... Autism statistics from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) identify around 1 in 68 American children as on the autism spectrum — a ten-fold increase in prevalence in 40 years. Careful research shows that this increase is only partly explained by improved diagnosis and awareness. Studies also show that autism is four to five times more common among boys than girls. An estimated 1 out of 42 boys and 1 in 189 girls are diagnosed with autism in the United States.”
For more information about the upcoming Cut-a-Thon and a list of the host sites, visit http://wecutforgood.wordpress.com/.