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Cooee Cuts opens as affordable hair salon in remote town

CatholicCare Wilcannia-Forbes (CCWF) has opened a hairdressing salon at Wilcannia, bringing a much-needed service to the outback community.
Called Cooee Cuts, it’s operating as a social enterprise to fill a gap.
The salon welcomed its first customers on September 6-8, and will operate three days a month, with its next opening set for October 10-12.
CCWF, which offers social and support services to 52 per cent of NSW, has made the project a priority.
It has partnered with Mildura-based hairdresser – and former Wilcannia resident – Juliann Mutch to deliver the professional and affordable service.
Wilcannia has a population of 745 people, more than 60 per cent of whom are Indigenous, the 2016 Census shows, and nearest service centre Broken Hill is a four-hour round trip away.
CCWF chief executive officer Anne-Marie Mioche said the organisation was pleased to launch its latest social enterprise at Wilcannia.
“Like our Cooee social enterprise cafes, Cooee Cuts is an investment in a small and remote community,” she said.
“This is about more than a new hairstyle, it’s how it makes you feel on the inside and Wilcannia residents should not miss out on that.”
CCWF social enterprise and community engagement manager Michael McDowell says community members are already embracing the salon.
“The smiles and laughter on the first day said it all,” he said.
“In our first week we had a client who hadn’t been in a hairdresser’s chair for 13 years.”
Mr McDowell says Ms Mutch has a special connection to Wilcannia and that’s why she is getting behind the initiative.
“She worked in Wilcannia years ago, and her heart is in this,” he said.
Cooee Cuts is co-located with Cooee for Coffee Wilcannia.
The salon will offer reduced-price haircuts at its October opening, with kids’ and men’s haircuts for $10, ladies’ pamper package of wash, cut and straightening for $20, ladies’ cut and colour for $60, and other services with consultation and quote.

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