To Shave or Not to Shave?
– If supporters of LifeStream Blood Bank’s new Operation
SOS (Shave or Save) initiative have their way, there will be several hundred more clean-shaven
faces in our community on March 1.
From Jan. 14 through Feb. 28, LifeStream is asking people to recruit “nominees” who
are willing to shave their facial hair (or possibly their head) if an agreed-upon individual
fundraising goal is met by the end of the campaign. Over the six-week period, nominators will
encourage their social network of friends, family and co-workers to make an online donation in
support of their nominee’s “shave” goal. Reluctant nominees will have the option of saving their
hair by matching the amount of donations logged on their webpage by Feb. 28. Individuals may
also nominate themselves and challenge their friends to meet their fundraising goal.
LifeStream’s president, CEO and medical director, Dr. Rick Axelrod, has volunteered to
shave the mustache he has had since he was 18 years old. “I have friends, family and
colleagues lining up to contribute to my shave goal! I’ve pledged not to exercise the “save”
option if my goal is met. This will be the first time I have been clean-shaven in more than 40
years,” said Axelrod.
In recognition of National Blood Donor Month (January), supporters will have the option
of donating blood or money. Each blood donation made at a LifeStream blood donor center or
mobile blood drive in support of Operation SOS will have a $25 in-kind value and may be
directed to the nominee of the blood donor’s choice. “We included the blood donation option to
give everyone the opportunity to support this initiative,” stated Axelrod. LifeStream hopes to
raise at least $50,000 to help pay for a new bloodmobile and collect 500 units of blood through
Operation SOS. “These funds will help us replace one older bloodmobile with a new eco-friendly
bloodmobile this year. Plus, each unit of blood we collect has the potential to save up to three
local patients’ lives,” Axelrod said.
LifeStream will award prizes in various categories, including best mustache, saddest
mustache, best beard and craziest facial hair. Additionally, if a nominator (and nominee) raises
at least $500, they will be eligible to win two domestic round-trip tickets ($800 value) on
Information about the initiative, including the registration process, can be found at
www.lstream.org/sos. Businesses interested in supporting or sponsoring LifeStream’s Operation
SOS may contact Dan Ballister, director of community development, at (909) 677-0136