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SOUTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. — Members of the South Kingstown Police Department are putting down their razors for a month to take part, for the first time, in No-Shave November.

Police officers aim to forgo shaving their beards for the month in order to raise money for charity, and they’re off to a good start.

“The money raised will go directly to St. Jude’s Children’s Cancer Research and for the CRC Foundation,” Sgt. Michael Bronson said. The CRC foundation is Fight Colorectal Cancer, one of the No-Shave November funded organizations for 2019, along with St. Jude and the Prevent Cancer Foundation.

The fundraising effort also has a web page: no-shave.org/org/SouthKingstownPoliceDepartment

To date, the department has raised more than $1,200 for the charities.

“We plan on taking group photographs of each shift at the end of the month and posting them to the SKPD Facebook page,” Bronson said.

According to its website, No-Shave November’s mission is to not only raise funds for cancer research and treatment but to educate the population about preventative measures.

Each day, 22,000 people die from cancer worldwide, according to the World Health Organization.

For more than six years, No-Shave November participants around the globe have put down their razors and foregone their hair appointments to join the fight against cancer. The No-Shave November campaign has successfully raised over $3.5 million dollars to combat cancer, according to the organization.

Bronson said that visitors to the website can donate anonymously if they wish. The group of police has a goal of $3,000, and is almost halfway there.

Letting their facial hair grow to raise money to fight cancer isn’t the only community effort police are involved with. They’re also giving the gift of reading.

The department is conducting a children’s book drive for local kids in need. It started on Nov. 1 and will continue through Dec. 16.

The department is collecting donations of new or like-new books for children in grades K-12. The goal is to collect at least 250 books to be distributed the week of Christmas.

Books can be dropped off at the police station lobby and at the town’s senior center. The department also will be at the book fair on Friday at Wakefield Elementary School.

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