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How to Support the HEADstrong Foundation

Nick Colleluori was diagnosed with Diffuse Large B-Cell non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, a blood cancer affecting the lymphatic systems, at the end of his freshmen season after playing significant minutes on defense for Hofstra. Shortly after his diagnosis, he created the HEADstrong Foundation to raise awareness and funds for cancer patients, calling on other lacrosse players and athletes alike to take action. Nick grew a mustache during his battle with cancer to draw the attention away from everything. Nick, with the help of UVA defenseman and now PLL Atlas assistant coach, Ken Clausen, started the Lax Stache Madness competition within HEADstrong in order to get college teams directly involved in the charity.

Below are reasons to sign your team up for the HEADstrong competition.

1) You Are Improving Lives Affected by Cancer

No one ever expects themselves or a family member to get cancer, but when it happens their lives are turned completely upside down. Not only are the physical and emotional effects devastating, but families are also impacted financially. In some cases, families have to move to an unfamiliar area in order to be closer to a treatment center. HEADstrong pays for meals, recreational activities, gives financial support for treatment, sends basic supplies, provides peer-to-peer support, and offers Nick’s House which provides free housing for patients not from the Philadelphia area that are receiving treatment nearby. By participating in Lax Stache Madness, your team is raising money for all of those amazing services.

2) Your College/MCLA Team Gets a Chance to Compete Against NCAA Division I Teams

No offense to your club or MCLA team, but you guys are never going to play an NCAA Division 1 team, let alone beat one in a game. However, with Lax Stache Madness you have a golden opportunity to beat one off the field. At some point, Lax Stache Madness will make a bracket pitting every team signed up against each other and there is a very real chance your MCLA team will get matched up against a Division 1 team. So, if you’ve ever dreamed of beating Syracuse or Duke, this is your chance.

3) You Have an Excuse to Grow a Mustache

Some people are probably scared to grow a mustache because of work or because they think it will look bad. Well now if anyone says you aren’t allowed to grow one or that it looks bad, you can say you are allowed to grow one and that it looks good. It also gives you a chance spread the word about the charity. Also, everyone knows that having a mustache automatically makes you cooler and instantly gains you respect. Just look at Burt Reynolds.

4) This Is the Easiest Charity Fundraiser You Will Do

Every team has to do charity work and sometimes it can be hard getting full participation if your team does an event on a weekend when not everyone is free. With Lax Stache Madness being completely online, it allows full participation and effort from everyone.

5) You Have the Chance to Win Cool Varsity Club Lacrosse Prizes

We cannot get into detail about what the prizes are yet, but best mustache, most money raised by a team, and most money raised by an individual, will win cool things from us.

Below are some excuses we’ve heard and reasons they’re not valid.

“We want to focus on fundraising for our team, not a charity”

We support teams’ fundraisers as much as we can and any chance we get. We understand how difficult it is to fundraise and run a college lacrosse team. However, we also know that it is possible to fundraise for your team and also fundraise for a charity like HEADstrong.

“We have trouble getting guys to pay dues, we won’t be able to get guys to fundraise”

Every dollar counts, no matter the size. We understand getting every guy to pay up to $1,000 each worth of dues can be difficult, but getting every guy to raise just $10 each is an easy $300 your team can raise. Like I said before, we support teams and players all we can to raise dues and fundraise. In the end, this is a more worthy cause.

“I have to ask my coach and executive board”

Sign up the team yourself. Grow up and be a leader for once.

“We’re not allowed to grow mustaches”

A lot of guys participating can’t grow mustaches even if they tried so it’s pretty much the same thing, the purpose is to raise money. Navy and Air Force are currently signed up.

“We don’t know how to sign up”

We made instructions on how to sign up HERE! If you still don’t understand, we’d be happy to take the time to walk you through it. Just make sure you sign up as a team and not as an individual.

“Don’t peer pressure us”

Haven’t heard “peer pressure” since high school, but that’s when someone is making you do something you’re not comfortable with. It’s not when someone is persuading your team to use their platform to raise money for a great cause.

Lastly the worst excuse that a couple teams have actually said.

“We just don’t want to”

You guys suck. You know who you are. You will be called out later don’t worry.

A couple teams told us they will be fundraising for a specific person close to the team or that they have been fundraising for a similar charity for years now and want to keep up that tradition. We in no way want to pressure teams into switching charities so if your team is doing a different one and you want us to repost and promote it, we gladly will. Some teams also said their school is not allowing them to participate, which is a unfortunate.

So, it looks like there are zero excuses to not sign up and at least four good reason to sign up to support HEADstrong. So if your team is not signed up seriously reconsider. We are calling on all lacrosse teams to sign up, MCLA, NCLL, GLLL, NLSE, NAIA, NCAA DI, DII, DIII, PLL, NLL, NLA, PBLA, Juniors, Men’s League, High School, and any other lacrosse team, please just sign up. If you need more info or convincing to sign up, I will personally take time out of my day to call you on the phone and talk to you as long as needed, that is a guarantee.

Just DM Varsity Club Lacrosse on Twitter or Instagram.