Cosplay is the art or practice of wearing costumes to portray characters from comics, films, animation, and science fiction. Comic conventions have boomed in popularity recently and “cosplay” – dressing up as a favorite character – is becoming more than just a hobby to many people. Now Cosplayers Suit Up For Jack. #SuitUpForJack is a trending blood donor campaign where people donate blood in costume. In addition to full costumes, participants can also choose to simply wear cosplay-inspired T-Shirts.
The Suit Up For Jack campaign was inspired by 12-year-old Jack Malott-Clarke. Jack was an avid cosplayer and attended numerous comic con type events in costume. However, Jack had to pause his cosplay when he was diagnosed at age 10 with Severe Aplastic Anaemia. Additionally, a year later he was also diagnosed with Paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria. Because this serious condition affects the body’s ability to make healthy blood, it means his bone marrow is empty.
Because of his condition, to date, Jack has required 132 units of blood and platelets. He has become an advocate for Canadian Blood Services. The #suitupforjack campaign was created to encourage blood donation to help others. According to Jack, “That’s what superheroes do!”
A Superhero Campaign is born and Cosplayers Suit Up For Jack.
The campaign began in Jack’s hometown of London, Ontario. McCulloch’s Costume Shop is also based in London. They created the campaign when they saw a CTV news feature on Jacks’s story and thought a good way to support Jack was to inspire fellow cosplayers to donate blood.
You only have to look at some of the costumes to realize the effort that people put into them. Cosplay has grown up. It’s an art, a hobby, and a creative pursuit. For an increasing number of people, it’s a way of life. Many Cosplayers make appearances in costume at charitable, private, and corporate events. Now that cosplayers are suiting up for Jack their creativity redirected to promoting the cause.
People who don’t wish to donate in full costume can simply wear a superhero inspired T-Shirt while donating.