DES MOINES, Iowa — Salons and barbershops all across Iowa are offering free services to trans students Friday as a part of the “I Am Me” initiative.

Tisha McCann, one of the co-founders of the I Am Me initiative and a hairstylist at Elevencherry, said that she first got the idea to offer free haircuts to the trans and nonbinary community after cutting a trans friend’s hair.

“I was cutting one of my friend’s hair after the haircut they revealed to me it’s the first good experience they’ve had in a salon. So I asked more questions asking how I could provide more services like that and to broaden it to the whole community I decided to do free or pay what you can haircut days,” McCann said.

McCann provided free haircut days for the trans community for around a year before starting the I Am Me initiative with her cofounder and fellow hairstylist at Elevencherry, Bailey Stone.

“After recent legislation and bills being passed we were inspired to do more so we thought why not more salons why not encourage everybody to help and give back,” Stone said.

Stone said that over 15 salons and barbershops are taking part in the initiative and that it shows the trans and nonbinary community they are supported.

“We want the trans and nonbinary community to feel the support that they have from their community despite what’s going on with the legislation we want them to feel empowered within themselves we want them to be encouraged to be authentic,” said Stone.

To sign up for free salon or barbershop services or to learn more about the I Am Me Initiative, visit the I Am Me website.