ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — Rockford is recruiting barbers and beauticians for educational sessions for them to “help interrupt the cycle of violence.”

According to the Mayor’s Office of Domestic and Community Violence Prevention, “Barbershops and salons are often places where clients develop a sense of community as they receive self-care. As a result, many times clients build trusting relationships with their barbers and may find them to be a trusted person to share concerns and challenges.”

Select barbers will go through training with the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) and the Family Peace Center to help them “create an atmosphere that supports safe dialogue in their facilities” and equip them with information on community resources and support.

According to the Rockford Police Department, 60-70% of youth committing crime in the city have reported exposure to domestic and sexual violence.

The Barbershop Project is the latest in a series of violence prevention initiatives in the city.

For shops interested in getting involved, click here.