RICHMOND, Va. -- There's a reason why you may be seeing more people with mustaches this season.
Every year, Mustaches for Kids Richmond (M4K) partners with 21 different charities around the area, with members raising money by growing mustaches.
"Last year we raised $850,000, and this year our goal is a million, so it's been a pretty effective tool," said Mike Keogh, a member with M4K.
Richmond Friends of the Homeless is one of those 21 charities now raising money through mustache growth. The group serves over 3,000 meals a week at Swansboro Baptist Church, Greater Mount Moriah Church and Tabernacle Praise on Hull Street.
“Right now, really the majority of people we’re feeding are elderly people who just can’t afford groceries," said Shawnee Hansen, the group's founder and president. “All kinds of people come to us. Homeless veterans. People battling addictions. People who are just struggling right now and need a helping hand, so there’s a big need out there.”
Volunteers will grow mustaches, raising money for the group, until the beginning of December.
Ironically, her 8-year-old grandson, who can't grow facial hair, is outperforming everyone.
He said this is his secret weapon to raising money: “Just being a child who can grow a mustache with no facial hair.”
His goal is to raise $26,000 by the end of the month. So far, he's raised over $16,000.
“It just helps a lot of people, children in the world, who are homeless, and don’t have any food," he explained.
His love of giving back gives his grandmother the greatest gift of all.
“I’m so proud of him. It’s such a good cause, and for him to feel so blessed that he wants to make sure kids are taken care of makes me very proud. Our whole family is so proud of him," Shawnee Hansen said. “To think that growing a mustache for a month could just impact so many lives. It’s very, very cool.”
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