LSU MOA partners with barbershop to provide haircuts for literacy

February 2017

For a little over a year, the LSU Museum of Art has partnered with O’Neil’s Barber and Beauty Salon to implement Line 4 Line, an initiative which rewards young boys’ commitment to reading.

Boys between the ages of 2 and 13 get a free haircut if they read a book. The program, initiated in December of 2015, has impacted over 160 boys to date. Line 4 Line has helped increased awareness around the importance of literacy, and is committed to instilling an appreciation of reading. The kids also receive books to take home, healthy snacks, and can participate in art projects alongside LSU MOA mentors. Lucy Perera, Coordinator of School and Community Programs for the LSU MOA, co-founded the initiative with barber, Curtis O’Neil, and has been active in ensuring its success.

“Line 4 Line is a very special program that blends literacy and community in such a way that is magical. Over the past year the program has touched over 75 young boys as well as numerous parents and siblings,” Perera said. She added, “O’Neil and his team of barbers have also taken the program out to schools and community events in Baton Rouge and New Orleans.”

The Line 4 Line program is the first Monday of every month at O’Neil’s Barber & Beauty Salon, 449 North Acadian. St. Aloysius Catholic School, LSU Glassell Gallery, and LSU Graduate Student Office of Design are all sponsors of the program.

“Line 4 LINE is an example of creative collaboration rooted in making a difference in the lives of children in our community – through positive role modeling and fostering a healthy attitude towards reading and education,” Perera concluded.

Line for Line builds on LSU’s past efforts to reach local residents through barbershops. In 2010, the LSU Office of Community and University Partnerships launched Fresh Cuts, Clean Health, which facilitated screenings for high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes.

“Barbershops have a rich history as social anchors in communities of color. Our constant partnership with them is a recognition that outreach works best at the grassroots level,” said Brandon Smith, Director of Community and Education Partnerships at LSU.

For more information about the Line for Line program or other LSU MOA outreach efforts, contact Lucy Perera at


Partially adapted from an article by WAFB’s Marcus Brown. You can find the original article here: