Hair Together Ireland

Community funded organisation teaching hairdressing and barbering skills to the vulnerable young people. We use the hair industry as a tool to build self-esteem, increase confidence & support mental health, in respect for environment & planet, giving better prospect in life and safeguarding from drug grooming.


Social Impact


Hair Together is the brainchild of Eileen McHugh, a qualified social care practitioner, and senior stylist, educator & session stylist. In early 2018 while volunteering in a youth club in a disadvantaged area North Dublin, Eileen saw first-hand the damage that drugs are doing to families in her community. The club lost some teenagers to drugs and Eileen realised the need for more opportunities for these children. It was this realisation that Eileen knew she had the tools and skills that could make a real difference. In November of same year, she approached a fellow Barber and friend Tony O’ Reilly, they together organised a barber class with 5 teenagers. The reaction from the children was overwhelming, they were so enthusiastic that by word of mouth we became quickly in demand. Onboard then came Éilis Ní Chearnaigh, Éilis’ as a rehabilitation specialist and with her background in social care they became the perfect team to drive this initiative forward.
Various groups and clubs from all over Ireland have reached out to express interest, such as “Coolmine Therapeutic centre” who work in helping patients recover from addictions in alcohol, drugs and gambling etc. “Hair Together” also have plans to bring their programme to the prison service, with the aim to introduce new opportunities that will help them reintegrate into society.
They have trained 30 young vulnerable people to date and hope to be able to extend to wider groups through much needed additional funding.

Eileen McHugh
Qualified social care practitioner, with 18 years’ experience in the hair industry, works as a senior stylist & colourist.
Anthony O’Reilly
Worked with top barbers in both Ireland and UK, runs & owns 2 successful barber shops; regularly visits drug rehabilitation & homeless services to cut hair.
Éilis Ní Chearnaigh
Qualified social care practioner & experienced rehabilitation specialist.

“Hair Together” is a 10-week, 10 session programme, each session lasting 3 hours. There is no cost to the individual participants & no previous experience is required. Students cover many areas gaining skills in various techniques using mannequin heads, live models. The programme also introduces them to inspirational talks from guest speakers, wellbeing professionals & opportunity to train in a working barber/hairdressing salon.

Hair stylists and barbers come together to help Irish teens stay in school and learn new skills