MVPP: Despite losing home Salvation Army volunteer expresses thanks through free haircuts

Luz Ciupeiu giving haircuts at Salvation Army

Our MVPP of the day is the remarkable Luz Ciupeiu, whose house burned to the ground on Thanksgiving Day, 2008. The unexpected tragedy brought Luz to the doors of the Salvation Army Norridge Corps. She and her husband had seven children under the age of 18 at the time. The Salvation Army helped them with bills and other emergency assistance.  After she and her husband got back on their feet, Ciupeiu wanted to do something to give back. She’s a licensed hairdresser. In between caring for her family, working full time as a gate agent for American Airlines and operating a salon out of her house, she volunteers to cut hair for free at the Norridge Citadel Corps.  Every Wednesday morning, a sign is posted on the door leading into the food pantry at the Norridge corps. Any client or friend of The Salvation Army can sign up for a haircut that evening. Ciupeiu sets up a barber chair and a mirror in the hallway of the corps. She cuts hair from 6:00-8:00 p.m. But, many evenings she stays later to fit in as many as six haircuts in one night.  There’s no charge for the haircut. But, if an individual is able to pay, Ciupeiu asks for donations of one dollar for children and two dollars for adults. All of the money goes back to The Salvation Army to fund its programs in other countries.

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