While former drug addicts often face difficult times after going sober, Nasir Sobhani decided to give something back to society after recovering from his own addiction. He decided to take up the barber’s mantle for the charitable benefit of homeless people, who in turn inspired a new purpose in his life.
“I used to be a drug addict and I didn’t care about anybody else. Now that I’m sober, serving others is the best high I’ve ever felt. Sharing the voice of the unheard is my new drug. I love being The Street’s Barber,” Nasir said, introducing himself on his website.
Due to a drug addiction while he was in his early twenties, Nasir’s life had gone topsy-turvy, and his future seemed bleak. From opiates to synthetic pills to cocaine, he was addicted to anything that could give him a high.
Thankfully, his mother was not too harsh on him, which helped him realize that he had an obligation to get rid of his addiction as soon as possible. He decided to enter rehab and was successful in conquering his ailment.
Realizing that he needed a new purpose in life, one that could give meaning to his existence, he decided to become a barber, and later started “Clean Cut Clean Start,” offering free haircuts to the homeless.
Not only does Nasir go about providing a great service to society, what gives him maximum satisfaction in his effort is patiently listening to their stories, which further inspires him to carry on in his new life mission.
Mark, 28. “He has no support system and doesn’t really have friends. He is lonely and just wants people to show him love and accept him.”
Chris, 21. “There was no escape and he had more than he could take, so he took sanctuary to the streets. At the age of 11, he found himself smoking ice and eventually got into heroin too.”
Ganesh, 34. “Distraught, broken, and alone, he was forced to live on the streets in his misery. He took up heroin in order to try his best to mask the pain of heartbreak.”
Rachel, 28. “[S]he really had a rough upbringing and that’s why she ran away and got adopted by the streets. She told me she had been using heroin on and off for 15 years. My heart sank, knowing she was only 28.”
Marcel, late 30s. “I can honestly say that no one, in my experience, has been as kind and generous as Marcel. He has 4 kids, none of which he gets to see anymore.”
Kevin, 48. “I’m sure some people would have thought that due to his past he would have stolen from me—but I had faith in him and gave him the benefit of the doubt. He was a genuinely good person—you could tell in his heart—it’s just that heroin masked it.”
Graham, 33. “He’s 33 years old and suffers from cerebral palsy and epilepsy. He is forced to live on the streets because he has no family.”
Jen, 50. “She looked at the mirror, shook my hand then gave me a hug and said ‘thank you, I finally feel beautiful again.’ The thing is I thought she was beautiful before also.”
Janko, in his 40s. “[H]e told me something very interesting. He said ‘I’m alone and have no one to listen to or tell me what to do—and because of that I always get my way.’ Because of that, he said, if he wanted to drink he would drink.”
As for why he decided to focus his effort on just the homeless section of society, Nasir has a very clear answer:
“A homeless person doesn’t get the respect and attention needed … So letting them know that they are worthy of human interaction is actually the main purpose here,” he told the Daily Mail.
“People think that I’m doing them a favor, nah … it’s actually a 50/50 relationship. They’re helping me do something I love and in return, they get a fresh look,” he told The Sydney Morning Herald.
Photo credit: Instagram | thestreetsbarber