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'Barbershop at the Library' Aims to 'Get Kids Talking,' Create Safe Space

The "Barbershop at the Library" series is held at the West Englewood Library Monday. The first event was Dec. 5.
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Photo courtesy of West Englewood Library

ENGLEWOOD — A new program in Englewood is bringing together teens for free haircuts and candid discussions on Monday.

"Barbershop at the Library" will host its second event at the West Englewood Library, 1745 W. 63rd St., from 4:30-7:30 p.m. The owner of Longevity Barbershop at 68th Street and Ashland Avenue, will provide the free haircuts. The event is for teens ages 13 to 19. The theme on Monday will be philanthropy.

"For me, it was just a way to get teens talking about things," teen program director Ade Abioye said.

He said the barbershop represents a place of congregation, "a place where people can be vulnerable" and say what's on their mind. He wanted to bring that environment to the library.

"It started as a way to get them talking about things happening to them in their community," Abioye said. "I just wanted the kids to talk."

The idea was something that a former branch manager and security guard came up with, and now Abioye is taking the lead. The series will cover different themes once a month.

Teens can come without a parent or guardian, but are asked to call the library to RSVP at 312-747-3481.

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