S.O.S. Shoes on Students

by on March 15th, 2015
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My last year as a school nurse, we decided to come up with a program that would help students receive new shoes who otherwise may have never owned a new pair of shoes. We called it S.O.S. Since this nurse came up with the name, and has not patented it, I would be so happy to loan you the name. Please share it, use it to heart’s content. My heart’s desire would be that every child has a new pair of shoes on their feet. It was not hard to see the many children that were wearing their big brother’s shoes, flip-flops in the wintertime, holes in their shoes, soles that were coming off and blisters because the shoes were too tight. We decided to put a plan in action.

The first thing we did was to ask the teachers to pick out students who appeared to need shoes. A list was sent to this nurse and our counselor. We then contacted a few church groups and local shoe stores that would participate in the program. We were lucky, as one of our local shoe stores donated 40 pairs of shoes and a ladies Bible study donated another 15 pairs.

We then had the hard task of going through the list and picking out the most neediest children. Unfortunately, not all children received shoes. The children did not know about getting the new shoes until the day they were measured for the shoes. The shoe store sent an employee to the school and measured each foot. They brought two or three styles that the children could pick from.

The orders were placed and once the shoes came in, the shoe store came back with the new shoes and gave to each student their new shoes, making sure each one fit. I cannot tell you how proud the children were to run down the halls in their new shoes. It is a wonderful program, which can be done by the local PTA, parents group, counselor or the school nurse.

It is our hope to do this program twice a year, once at the beginning of school and once again the first part of April.

There are many programs out there that help so many. I will list a few that you may find helpful.

Need-a-Shoe Foundation

http://needashoe.com

100 percent of your donation goes toward the purchase and distribution of shoes to needy school aged children. Need-a-Shoe Foundation works with school administrators and teachers who choose the neediest children in their schools for the program.

Shoes 4 Kids

“The mission of SHOES FOR AUSTIN is to motivate children (K-12) to achieve physical fitness goals by providing them with the incentive of new, brand-name athletic shoes.”

http://www.shoesforaustin.org/i_based.htm

Soles4Souls

http://www.soles4souls.org

The shoe collection is done under the organizational name of Soles4Souls, a nonprofit group that helps to provide shoes to individuals in areas that have endured a natural disaster such as flooding or an earthquake, to give relief to the victims of suffering.

Nike-Reuse-a Shoe

http://www.nikereuseashoe.com

This is not a shoe donation program, but a recycling program for sports shoes. The more we try to recycle, then the better our world can be.

It is possible to host a 5k run by getting sponsors as well from local stores such as Wal-Mart and other shoe stores. Many communities love to help, they just do not know where to start. Some local churches may also make a few donations and throw in some socks too. It only takes one person to get the spark going. I urge you to be that spark, and find that child that needs that new pair of shoes.

With tender hearts, we clothed your feet with love,
Sunnie Day


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