Meet Darryl Pervis of DPERV’S TOP BBQ in Hamden, Connecticut. Darryl has a lot in common with our youth in foster care. When he was seven years old, his biological mother became ill and was unable to care for him. Darryl lived in kinship care with various relatives until his mother passed away when he was in his early teens.

Darryl struggled with the death of his mother, expressing his grief by rebelling. He saw the adults in his life as disciplinarians and rather than the nurturing, supporting presence he needed. Darryl began using drugs and committing petty crimes.

In 2007, Darryl was arrested and incarcerated. Darryl’s time in jail afforded him the time to study the Bible and his path was forever altered. Upon his release, Darryl sought out the individuals he had wronged and asked for forgiveness. He renewed his connection with several organizations that had been influential in his life. After incarceration, the Crest/Fellowship House, Shelter Plus, and the Continuum of Care offered Darryl the help he needed to get back on his feet.

Eager to provide for his family and serve his community, Darryl opened the doors to his first barbershop in 2011. Darryl and his wife, Thomea incorporated F.I.S.H.E.R.S. (Faith inspired servants helping others reach services) to give back to the community. F.I.S.H.E.R.S. earliest efforts were focused on cooking for and feeding the homeless. Their good works expanded from there. Darryl worked with a basketball league for youth in the New Haven area, and he established the “Annual School Supply Giveaway,” donating backpacks filled with school supplies to Hamden students in partnership with the Hamden Police and Fire Departments. He also hosts an Annual Community Day and a Mother-Son Dance.

In 2018 Darryl and Thomea, opened DPERV’S TOP BBQ. The couple, with their passion for cooking and experience cooking for large numbers, earned rave reviews at their new eatery. The Pervises sold the barber shop to friend and community member Ali Glass, also a former foster child, and community supporter. Ali and Darryl partnered this year to co-host the Annual Community Day.

Darryl’s story is one of transformation and healing. He understands how one caring adult can make all the difference in the life of a child. That is why he is an avid supporter of IPPI’s foster care program and is committed to spreading awareness of the need for foster families for youth in our community.

Learn more about DPerv’s Top BBQ and their upcoming events on their Facebook, Instagram and website.