A Hairstylist Is Traveling The U.S. In An RV To Give The Homeless Free Haircuts

" It is a great feeling to know you are making a difference in your community."



Felisha Ruehmer is a licensed cosmetologist who was inspired to use her skills and expertise to help the homeless in South Carolina thanks to something she saw on the Internet. Now Ruehmer's formed an organization called Walking Tall, and travels in an RV across the country to provide homeless men and women throughout the United States with a free haircut. Still, she has her heart set on doing more.

Felisha Ruehmer
Felisha Ruehmer

"I kept getting tagged in a Facebook video of someone doing street haircuts for the homeless. After being tagged for several months, I decided it must be God's will," Ruehmer tells A Plus of how Walking Tall initially came to be about 18 months ago. "I stepped out on faith and haven't looked back since. It is a great feeling to know you are making a difference in your community."

In addition to giving homeless people free haircuts, Ruehmer does her best to provide them with clothes, food, toiletries, and a place to pray, and even offers showers through the RV she was able to buy through donations from her GoFundMe page. Both in her travels and at the local level, Ruehmer frequently encounters homeless veterans and those battling drug addiction.

In October 2017, thanks in part to GoFundMe donations, Ruehmer was able to open a brick and mortar headquarters for Walking Tall, meaning she can help more homeless people than ever before in multiple ways. "We offer a soup kitchen daily, food pantry, laundering services, free haircuts, toiletry items, and so much more," she says. "There's not just a need for homelessness in our community, but a need to help low income families as well."

Felisha Ruehmer
Felisha Ruehmer

As a thank you for all that she does in her community and beyond, GoFundMe named Ruehmer today's GoFundMe Hero, which is something she truly appreciates. "It is such an honor to be named a GoFundMe hero, because I know that there are so many other people in the world trying to make a difference in their community," she explains. "It means a lot to be noticed, and to help get the word out about what I'm doing to help others."

Still, Ruehmer is well aware Walking Tall's success is also thanks to volunteers and outside help. "I couldn't do it without the support of others," she states. "Without everyone coming together, it wouldn't be possible for my ministry to grow."

Felisha Ruehmer
Felisha Ruehmer

And speaking of growing, even with the Walking Tall headquarters now up and running, Ruehmer doesn't expect to stay still for long. "With your support of our GoFundMe campaign, we can continue to change the world! Our ministry isn't just about helping our community, but it's about helping the lives of the homeless all over the world," she says. "We've been to 17 states so far and helped over 1,300 homeless in just a year and a half. The possibilities are endless if we have the funds to back the ministry."

With additional funds donated through GoFundMe, Ruehmer wants to expand to a homeless shelter, and has her heart set on giving the RV a "complete makeover" so it can serve as a fully functional salon.



Felisha Ruehmer
Felisha Ruehmer

Above all else, Ruehmer also wishes people would stop stigmatizing homelessness and cease looking down on people who have fallen on hard times. "I wish people understood that we are all a paycheck away, or a natural disaster away from being homeless ourselves. It is important to put yourself in someone else's shoes and understand what they're going through," she concludes. "We are changing the world one town at a time, and compassion is a huge part of that!" 

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