A Syracuse Staple Finds New Home, Opening Shop and Hearts to Kids in Need Collins Barbershop Providing Essential Needs for SCSD Children

[CRAWFORD]: For many people, barbershops represent a safe, communal space, a sanctuary of sorts to talk ball, life, and everything in between

[CRAWFORD]: This is Charleston Collins Sr., better known as Sarge around these parts. He runs the shop alongside his son, Tyson, and his wife, Ms. Mary. His shop is hosting the annual Rise Above Poverty toiletry collection drive, a chance to give Syracuse kids in need, a chance at a fair start

[MARY COLLINS]: All I have to do is hang the poster up and tell people about it, and then they donate. I love helping kids, you know, people need this stuff.

[CHARLESTON COLLINS]: That just caught my attention to be able to help the kids, ugh, do better. I think when they can not focus on their personal hygiene, and not worry about being teased or picked at or shunned because of the way they smell or the way they may look, then they can actually focus more on getting educated.

[CRAWFORD]: Faith is a big part of the culture here at Collins, and Sarge’s love of the Lord is a foundational principle he uses to guide his everyday life.

[CHARLESTON COLLINS]:I guess, supporting Rise Above Poverty, and the things I choose to do in life, support my belief. My faith is in Jesus Christ, I’ve been saved a long time, very long time, and I try to help other people understand, they can have, what they want in life.

[CRAWFORD]: Rise Above Poverty has been a godsend for the kids of the Syracuse City School District in providing essentials for them needed to get through the tough winter. However, for Sarge, Tyson, and Ms. Mary. this is one of the few godly things that makes this barbershop such a special place.

[CHARLESTON COLLINS]: Well, I didn’t establish the legacy, yeah, that was my father’s idea, he birthed the baby, so to speak. I just happened to fall in place, as I was growing up I never intended on being a barber.

[CRAWFORD]:Grandaddy Collins overcame a lot to start the family barber legacy, and it’s something that Sarge holds near and dear to his heart

[CHARLESTON COLLINS]: Well, my father was born in Georgia, he grew up in Florida. My mother was born in Alabama, they met in Florida, and him, having been in poverty, Rise Above Poverty, him, having been in poverty, I can think about where he came from, and what he had to go through, you know? For people, to treat other people, in a way that’s so degrading, because of who they think they are, is, it’s hard, to think he’d even have to deal with that, as a person.

[CRAWFORD]: With the fellowshiping in the shop continuing to thrive, and Sarge continuing to crank out quality cuts, he plans to pass down the family legacy, and help the next generation.

[CHARLESTON COLLINS]: When it comes to looking at the future, I have children, I have grandchildren, I have seven children, fourteen and growing grandchildren, three great-grandchildren, just thinking about where it could lead for them, it would make sense to leave something behind for them.

[CRAWFORD]: For now, Sarge continues to be a beam of hope in a community looking for light. Josh Crawford, NCC News

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (N.C.C. News) — Collins Barbershop has been a mainstay in the Syracuse community for over half a century. The owners, Charleston Collins Sr., has cultivated a well-respected, clean cut environment of faith, where constant conversation, sports debates, and wisdom and advice are constantly passed from one generation to the next. As long as you respect  Charleston’s, referred to as
“Sarge” by his wife Mrs. Mary Collins, rules and the history of the place, you’re welcomed with open arms. 

This iteration of the Collin’s barbershop has found a new home on Erie Boulevard after moving from Kennedy Square less than a year ago. With the new move, and Sarge’s faith and love of the community, he stumbled upon Rise Above Property. Their toiletry collection drive,   was created to to provide kids within the Syracuse City School District with body wash, toothpaste, soap, deodorant, and other essentials.

For Charleston, hosting the drive in the shop is a way to pay homage to his father, Carlton Collins Sr., the first barber in the Collins family line, and the genesis of the Collins barbershop family legacy.

Carlton Collins Sr, born in Georgia and raised in Florida, overcame poverty and prejudice in the deep South to establish a legacy for his family, and the hardships his father endured aren’t lost on Mr. Charleston. With the responsibility now squarely on his shoulders, he’s been sure, with hosting events like the collection drive, to protect the sacred legacy and reputation that preceded him.

With his son, Tyson, a barber in the chair directly next to his dad’s, and Ms. Mary holding down the adjacent salon next to the barbershop, Mr. Carlton would be proud of the blueprint Sarge is laying down for his family, and for the generations behind him to follow. In short, with the work Sarge is doing in the community, he’s truly helping Syracuse rise above poverty in every way possible. 


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