Last week, iTriage announced its partnership with barber Dennis Mitchell’s Cutting For A Cure, an event designed to raise awareness and funds for health issues affecting minorities. Funds raised through Cutting For A Cure provide education and free health screenings by a team of medical personnel from Harlem Hospital, Iris House and Barbershop Quartet. The screenings will take place at Denny Moe’s Barbershop in Harlem from Friday, July 20 through Sunday, July 22, and will test for diseases ranging from diabetes, hypertension, high cholesterol, asthma, kidney disease, hepatitis and HIV. The theme of Cutting For A Cure 2012 is to thank First Responders including NYPD and NYFD for their contributions and support.
Last week, Denny Moe answered some of iTriage’s questions about what compelled him to start Cutting For A Cure, and where he sees the event going in the future.
1. Where did you grow up? What made you want to become a barber?
I was born in Brooklyn, and I grew up in NYC. I didn’t know what I was going to do after high school, but that all changed one spring evening. I was a member of the JROTC, and I was invited to the officer’s ball. My hair was a mess, so I picked up a pair of clippers, and they felt so natural in my hand. When I got to the ball, everyone asked me, “Who cut your hair?” and that was it. Everyone wanted a haircut from Dennis Mitchell, now known as Denny Moe.
2. How did your interest in African American men’s health arise? Do you have personal reasons for your interest?
Personal? Definitely. Cancer has gone through my family. It took my father and a few of his brothers and sisters. The day after my father passed away, his brother passed. I watched how cancer works: it goes hard and it is relentless. For this reason I put together the 48 hour marathon. Anyone can put an event together and have screening trucks for a couple hours. I really wanted to go hard, like cancer goes hard. Many black men do not go to the hospital, they don’t get screenings. I realized that my barbershop, as an intrinsic part of my community, is one of the best platforms to spread awareness, and I wanted to use that platform to provide health screenings, along with entertainment. I wanted to emphasize to my brothers and sisters that early detection and prevention is of the utmost importance in dealing with prostrate cancer, colon cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure, HIV/AIDS and other illnesses.
3.What do you enjoy most about organizing Cutting For A Cure?
I get a rush from it all: meeting new people and the anticipation of the event itself. I love doing what I love, and when it all comes together…it’s amazing!
4. What do you hope people get out of Cutting For A Cure?
I want everyone to realize that they have the opportunity to live longer, healthier lives by taking their health into their own hands. Cutting For A Cure is about community, it’s about empowerment, it’s about individual agency, it’s about taking charge, all while getting a great haircut.
5. What do you envision for Cutting For A Cure in the future?
I have big plans for Cutting For A Cure…I can see Cutting For A Cure going national, even global, bringing attention to regions like Africa and South America that are being ravaged by the HIV/AIDS.
6. In a phrase, what is your part in Cutting For a Cure?
I want to be known as someone who didn’t give because he had, but who had because he gave!
About iTriage, LLC
iTriage LLC, headquartered in Denver, Colorado, is a global health care technology company founded in 2008 by two emergency medicine physicians. The company’s market-leading platform and mobile/Web applications offer a proprietary Symptom-to-Provider™ pathway that empowers consumers to make better health care decisions. iTriage helps people answer the two most common medical questions: “What could be wrong?” and “Where should I go for treatment?” Millions of consumers around the globe have downloaded the free iTriage mobile app on their iPhone and Android devices, and thousands of health care providers use iTriage to reach and communicate critical facility and service information to patients. For more information, please visit http://about.iTriageHealth.com.
About Cutting For A Cure
Cutting For A Cure is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that assists underserved communities and ethnic groups in improving their quality of life by providing health education and giving them access to the necessary tools and resources to live a long and healthy life. Cutting For A Cure was started by Dennis “Denny Moe” Mitchell, owner of Denny Moe’s Superstar Barbershop in Harlem, to encourage African-American men and their sons to take charge of their health through education and regular screenings that detect preventable diseases. For more information, please visit http://cutting4acure.com.