Beauty salon offers employment and mental health support to vulnerable young adults
Scottish hair and beauty business Brave, Strong, Beautiful has expanded its social enterprise to provide even more vulnerable young people with training opportunities, employment and mental health support by opening a second salon in the heart of Edinburgh.
Based on Lothian Street, the expansion to a second site (on May 17) is allowing the business to provide even more help and opportunities to disadvantaged young adults in the local area who are interested in beauty and hair, offering them an alternative and accessible route into the industry.
The business delivers training to SVQ Level 2 to young people aged 16–24, and those candidates who are involved with the project then go on to gain employment as a beauty therapist/hairdresser or work on a self-employment basis.
The salon’s range of individual therapies include counselling, hypnotherapy and massage therapies, offering theoretical, practical and vocational support, and all are aimed at promoting a positive future for those whom college may not feel like the right route. It also offers training workshops that support mental health in young people and provide assistance to find employment.
Founding director Kerry Anderson, who has a background in social care and counselling, said: “I know from first-hand experience that young people who have faced disadvantages growing up need more than just educational and vocational training to keep them on track when studying. They need to feel supported, encouraged and safe, to take steps towards creating a positive future.
“We’re opening the Lothian Road salon with seven staff, some of whom have been training with us since 2019, and I personally feel so proud of what they have all achieved. I’m lucky to have a group of very talented people working with me who are achieving great things because of the extra support and care they have been given.”
Since 2019, Brave, Strong, Beautiful has been operating as a community interest company (CIC) and has built a reputation in the area for supporting vulnerable young adults while also delivering a first-class range of beauty and hair treatments.
Stories from people that Brave, Strong, Beautiful have helped:
Senior apprentice Sarah Page started her training at Brave, Strong, Beautiful in April 2019.She said: “Since being part of Brave, Strong, Beautiful and receiving the additional support, my confidence has grown so much, and I can see changes every day. I feel that I get listened to and that Kerry understands what I’m going through.”
Apprentice Chloe Bain is excited for her next chapter, commenting: “Since starting with Brave, Strong, Beautiful in November, I feel so welcome and included. I’m excited to start my apprenticeship next month and it’s amazing to be doing it in a brand-new salon.”
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Image: Kerry Anderson in Brave, Strong, Beautiful.