If you see a normally clean shaven Gastonia Police officer with a five o’clock shadow or beard in November, please feel free to ask, “Why haven’t you shaved?”
The Gastonia Police Department (GPD) is partnering with Special Olympics North Carolina (SONC) to raise awareness and funds in a campaign called “No-Shave November.” GPD holds fund-raisers for SONC annually through events such as the Law Enforcement Torch Run and a Burpeethon, but this is its first No-Shave November.
Officers donate $40 to SONC to participate and are provided a flyer about the campaign that they can give to anyone asking about their growing facial hair. “For many of us, it’s been years since we’ve been able to grow a beard,” said Sgt. Scott Norton, chairman of GPD’s Special Olympics fund-raising committee. “It’s a fun opportunity and it’s for a great cause.”
The mission of SONC is to provide year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities, giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills and friendship with their families, other Special Olympics athletes, and the community.
“The Gastonia Police family supports SONC and this is one way that we’ll be demonstrating that support during the month of November,” Chief Robert Helton said.
Anyone interested in making a donation to SONC in honor of the Gastonia Police Department may do so at http://sonc.net/give/.