History of Mustaches for Kids (M4KRichmond)
M4K Richmond, Inc. is a volunteer-run organization that was founded in 2003 with the goal of raising money for local children’s charities while having fun growing mustaches. Inspired by the National Mustaches for Kids chapters in California and NYC, two Richmond-area philanthropic geniuses took a leap of faith and grew their first mustache. After being spiritually and piously enlightened by the magic of 1) having a mustache and 2) helping children’s charities; the pair began a 10-year campaign to relentlessly recruit growers and brand the M4K Richmond organization. In the beginning, there was a small group of less than 10 growers with limited mustache-growing potential. Membership has grown each year with over 120 growers sporting sweet mustaches during this past growing session. In 2010 M4K Richmond was incorporated and received recognition as an official 501(c)3 nonprofit public charity by the IRS. Since 2003 when the Richmond chapter was founded, M4K Richmond has enlisted the efforts of hundreds of brave growers who collectively have raised over $1 million dollars for Richmond-based children’s charities such as The Children’s Hospital Foundation, Greater Richmond SCAN, and the ASK Childhood Cancer Foundation and FEED More.
100% of the money raised goes to our charities, which is phenomenal! Every single dollar matters and greatly helps families in and around Richmond. How your donations can impact these wonderful organizations:
$1 - Helps provide 4 meals to hungry children in Richmond
$25 - Provides snacks for 16 kids receiving treatment in the clinic for 1 day or purchase 10 thermometers for families in the Pediatric Emergency Department
$50 - Purchases 5 copies of Goodnight Moon to be placed in 5 baby boxes given to each baby delivered at Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU or provide a gas card or groceries for a family
$100 - Provides an hour of psychosocial care to a child, sibling, or parent impacted by cancer or covers the cost of an exercise assessment and Personal Training session for a patient in CHoR’s Healthy Lifestyles Center
$250 - Purchases 100 premature baby diapers, provide 1 week of after-school tutoring for a child or pay a utility bill for a parent that had to quit their job due to child's diagnosis or treatment schedule
$500 - Assists a family with paying rent or mortgage payments or covering the cost of 5 children to participate in CHoR’s Healthy Lifestyle Center’s group exercise class
$1,000 - Allows a group of patients from the Center for Craniofacial Care at CHoR to have a Boys/Girls Night Out
$2,000 - Sends 15 medically fragile children who live at CHoR’s Rehabilitation Pavilion to Virginia Beach for a day
$5,000 - Covers the cost of three pediatric wheelchairs
M4K Richmond's Charities https://m4krichmond.org/our-charities (*All of the descriptions are below but this page does not have the logo organizations included.*)
- 1. ASK- Making Life Better for Children with Cancer-ASK Childhood Cancer Foundation is a Virginia-based nonprofit dedicated to making life better for children with cancer and their families through financial assistance.
- 2. SCAN-SCAN's mission is to prevent and treat child abuse and neglect throughout the Greater Richmond area by protecting children, promoting positive parenting, strengthening families, and creating a community that values and cares for its children.
- 3. The Children's Hospital Foundation- The Children's Hospital Foundation is dedicated to funding and advocating for pediatric initiatives that improve the status of health care and the quality of life for children in our region. The Foundation provides support for the programs and initiatives of the Children's Hospital of Richmond at VCU and the children it serves each year, as well as other pediatric healthcare programs in the community. Whether it is time, skills, or financial support, the gifts of the community are truly what enables the Children's Hospital Foundation to continue our mission of supporting children and families in the area.
- 4. Feed More-Feed More collects, prepares, and distributes food to neighbors in need throughout Central Virginia. With a service area that stretches across 34 cities and counties, Feed More’s comprehensive programs and network of nearly 300 agencies help ensure our communities have access to healthy meals year-round. Feed More is a proud member of Feeding America and Meals on Wheels America.
Hunger is a year-round issue and more than 47,000 children in Central Virginia are not receiving the necessary nutrition. Feed More’s Children’s Programs, including the Kids Cafe, School Market, and Summer Food Service Program, provide our region’s kids and teens with the nutritional building blocks throughout the year that they need to learn, grow, and most importantly, thrive.
- 5. FRIENDS-FRIENDS operates two multi-service licensed child development centers in Richmond currently serving nearly 1,000 children, ages six weeks to 17 years of age, through a broad array of services. FRIENDS children gain critical literacy and developmental skills needed to succeed in school and in life. Additionally, children achieve a greater understanding an appreciation of their community and the world around the Richmond area.
- 6. Richmond Friends of the Homeless-Richmond Friends of the Homeless provides nourishing meals and services seven days a week to hungry men, women, and children in our community. Our three program sites located in impoverished neighborhoods work hard to alleviate hunger, improve nutritional status, and offer much-needed additional services, especially for the many children we see each day.
- 7. Henrico CASA-Henrico CASA advocates in court for a child's best interests and seeks to educate the community concerning the needs of abused and neglected children. Our vision is that all children in Henrico County live in safe and stable homes.
- 8. Hope For Learning- Hope For Learning provides reading materials and supplies to underprivileged children from kindergarten through fifth grade and, through tutoring and mentoring, encourages them to discover the lifelong joy of literacy.
- 9. Ronald McDonald House Charities-RMHC's vision is for every family whose child needs access to specialty care in RVA to have world-class temporary housing and support services and the opportunity to be actively involved in their child’s care.
- 10. ChildSavers-ChildSavers is the only nonprofit in Virginia using a coordinated prevention and intervention model to address children’s mental health, preparing them for lifelong learning and helping them recover from trauma.
- 11. Beyond Boundaries-Beyond Boundaries specializes in guiding participants with disabilities, veterans, at-risk youth, and recovery programs on outdoor adventures.
- 12. Better2gether-Better2gether's mission is to understand, support, and equip families of children with medical complexities with the tools to care for their children.
- 13. Children's Home Society- Children's Home Society's mission is to build strong, permanent families and lifelong relationships for Virginia’s at-risk children. CHS is proud to reflect on 116 years of experience and is inspired to serve the children and families of today.
- 14. Big Brothers Big Sisters-Big Brothers Big Sisters is accountable for youth building social skills, increasing academic achievement, and creating healthy lifestyles.
- 15. Kesem-At Kesem, we are committed to creating a world where every child who has a parent with a cancer diagnosis or who has lost a parent to cancer is never alone. We support these children through and beyond their parent's cancer with free, fun-filled creative programs and a lasting community.
- 16. Speak Up For Mental Health (The Cameron K. Gallagher Foundation)-Cameron K. Gallagher Foundation's mission is to fulfill Cameron's dream and legacy of being a positive force that works to cultivate awareness and understanding of teenage depression and anxiety.
- 17. Next Move Program-The Next Move Program organization, partners with businesses to create guided internship and externship experiences for young adults with disabilities. Through education and job training, we empower them to achieve their goals and live their dreams.
- 18. Sportable-Sportable creates opportunities to make sports accessible for individuals with physical disabilities and visual impairments year-round. By fostering a fun, inclusive, competitive, and accessible environment, Sportable transforms the lives of athletes and frees them to see beyond their disabilities, enhances their peer relationships, and helps them reach their personal finish line.
- 19. The YWCA-The YWCA is dedicated to eliminating racism, empowering women, and promoting peace, justice, freedom, and dignity for all and includes their Sprout School which provides a full-day, high-quality early childhood education for children aged 2 months to 5 years old.
- 20. The Sprout School- The Sprout School provides a full-day, high-quality early childhood education for children aged 2 months to 5 years old. The Sprout School offers financial aid and thus encourages all families to apply, regardless of income.
- 21. Comfort Zone Camp is a bereavement organization that transforms the lives of children who have experienced the death of a parent, sibling, primary caregiver, or significant person.
- 22. Oakwood Arts- Oakwood Arts makes art and careers in creative industries accessible to all through community engagement, inspiring programming, and experiential education. Our programs include classes and workshops that focus on the digital and technical skills students need to succeed in the creative workforce.
- 23. L.A.U.N.C.H. For Life's-L.A.U.N.C.H. For Life's mission is to empower and enable young men in need of positive male role models to L.A.U.N.C.H into adulthood with resilience, compassion, and self-worth.
- 24. Little Hands Virginia- Little Hands Virginia makes sure children from birth to 3 years old have the essentials to thrive from “Day 1.”
How it Works
M4K Richmond (Mustaches for Kids) improves the quality of life for local children through individual fundraising, partnering with local charities and businesses, and having a little bit of fun with facial hair. Each year, during the four-week Growing Season spanning November and December, Growers sprout sweet, sweet Mustaches. Per Mustaches for Kids bylaws, they shave their faces, except for the Mustache, a minimum of once a week and solicit donations from friends, family, coworkers, and people in the community--kind of like getting pledges to run a marathon, without the exertion, cramping, or dehydration. Call it a facial hair marathon.
I would not be as successful a grower if it were not for the friends and family supporting my efforts! Furthermore, I could not do this without your support. Sure, it's fun to grow a mustache, but to know you're making a difference in the lives of children makes it even better. Every dollar makes a difference, just like every whisker makes a sweet 'stache!
Why I grow: One special thing about M4K Richmond is that it is completely local and all the proceeds stay local. This is not true of every mustache charity. Since this organization is local, there is a strong camaraderie of returning growers. I have formed many strong friendships that I look forward to seeing each year. Finally, I can't grow a beard but I am able to grow a mustache, so I revel in this part of my manhood!!!!