The proprietor of DK Barbers is a Gambian origin who has been living in the city of Nottingham for over a decade now. His name is Dawda Kairaba Jabang which is hardly known by anyone. He is named after the former President of The Gambia Sir Dawda Kairaba Jawara who was knighted by the H.M Queen Elizabeth for his contributions to the struggle for the independence of The Gambia and his knowledge in animal science and veterinary.
DK as widely known, is a professional in his barbering trade which has spiralled him beyond the boundaries of the city of Nottingham, attracting customers from all age brackets. But DK’s focus is on youths. He has been working with many young people in Nottingham specially those in the Radford and Hyson Green area.
His companionship with young people started when he was operating on the Mansfield Road where his network of positive influence kick started. He began to be a mentor to many of the young ones as a result of his advocacy for peace and respect, positivity, responsibility and need for education. It didn’t take long for his name to become a big brother figure within the area which he operates.
DK who now operates on Alfreton Road (186, NG7 3PE), has become a great influence to young people, using his workshop as a training spot for youths who would want to pick up barbering as a profession. He hosts and provide them with all the prerequisites of the profession.
In an interview with Mojatu Magazine, DK said the youths have more to lose when they idle on the streets than when they are occupied.
He said he is worried by the rate of violence among young ones and he is willing to offer them the chance to stay away from trouble by teaching them how to make decent and beautiful hair-cuts which will help them financially and how to interact with others outside their network of friends. “It hurts me when I hear that youths are involve in knife and other forms of crimes knowing that a serious and meaning positive conversation can give them a second thought that can change their lives for the better; which I am willing to spend my time and resources upon.
My saloon is open to anyone who wants make a meaning difference in life”, he stressed. He told this magazine that he has a slogan which he would like to use to challenge all youths who think they cannot have a second chance because they had once been involved in a crime by mistake.
DK profoundly said, “my challenge to them is my hashtag; ‘#CLIPPERS OVER BLADE’, which I want to use against knife/blade careers and give them the HOPE they deserve. I will give them free barbering skills lessons and stipends just to help them get out of that bottomless pit”.
DK said he also uses his workshop as a venue to host video games such as FIFA football tournaments and NBA Basketball. He uses these games to hold competitive tournaments and winners go home with lucrative prizes sponsored by himself such as cash, designer trainers, dinner tickets at top restaurants, free hair cuts among others. He also revealed that he builds and sponsors football and basketball teams and participate during tournaments organised in the city.
Besides the spheres o his workshops, DK is also an active player within the Gambian Community and serves in their social committee. Apart from community service participation, DK said he provides mentor sessions for victims of bully and crimes and help them overcome their fears and worries. He also said he risks his life sometimes by brokering peace between rival factions of post code fracases.
When asked what is his plans for the youths, he said he wants partners and collaborators in his crusade to provide hope and second chance for younger ones. He also said that his long-term aspiration is to develop his workshop into a skills college accredited by the education system whereby certified graduates will hold nationally recognised diplomas. He didn’t hesitate to mention his disgust by the rate of knife crime especially within the BAME community.
DK concluded by alluding that he wants to be a champion in the community and is always willing to render his service to the community and the people especially the young ones. He solicits support from all relevant authorities and any organisation that operate around his area to help in realise his desire to bring change to the youths.
Read more of our articles in our Mojatu Magazine.