This was the fourth year that Metafolics Salon in Denver sponsored Beauty for a Cure, a one day fundraiser in honor of Marsha Gardenswartz who has been battling fourth stage melanoma and is a long time client of salon owner Jason Linkow.  On Sunday, May 4, 2008, the Metafolics folks all donated their time (and the salon the beauty supplies) to offer event supporters any hair service for a $100 donation to raise money for cancer research at the University of Colorado Foundation for Melanoma Research.  In addition to their choice of a complimentary hair service, supporters also received a free melanoma screening with one of two well-know local skin care doctors, as well as educational materials about melanoma prevention and treatment. 

I initially heard about “Beauty for a Cure”, sitting in Jason’s chair while getting one of his fabulous hair cuts. The first year Metafolics did the fundraiser, they collected just over $5,000 to donate.  Since then, Jason and his staff have grown the event after learning a few lessons on promotion and leveraging resources along the way.  Unfortunately, I was in Maine this year working on my book and could not attend the event personally.  However, last year I did attend and while they were able to raise over $10,000, I know the Salon folks were disappointed with the level of attention and support the event received.  However, to their credit, this did not deter them from going it again and finetuning their approach – including starting the planning and promotion much earlier and adding a second doctor to allow provision of more screenings.

And…the results were FABULOUS!  The event this year will gross over $68,000 for the CU research center!  How exciting!  Roughly $8,000+ dollars were collected through direct donations for services provided by Metafolics staff.  Through Jason’s efforts to leverage the Salon’s donation, each $100 donated was matched by $1,200 in funds from other foundations.  Talking to Jason, it is easy to see he is very pleased with the dollar amount raised this year.  However, he is also proud of the education and awareness this event brings to clients and the community.  Also, because of the free skin cancer screenings associated with the event, several people now know they have the disease and can do something about it before their chances at a full recovery are diminshed greatly.

In addition to donations for services the day of the event, Metafolics also offers clients the opportunity to donate, even if they could not participate that day.  “If people would like to donate, they can do so on the CU Foundation Web site, Click ‘Give Online’ and then select the health sciences campus, then University of Colorado Cancer Center and indicate “melanoma research” in the notes section. To send a check donation, make the check out to the CU Foundation and indicate “melanoma cancer research” in the subject line. Checks can be sent to: CU Foundation, Gift Processing, P.O. Box 17126, Denver, CO 80217.”

Also, Metafolics got great press for Beauty for a Cure this year.  Kathy Walsh of Denver’s Channel 4 did two great news spots about the event.  Check them out:

Congratulations Metafolics Salon on your successful signature event in 2008!