Thursday, January 03, 2008

Ravenscroft 3rd Graders in The News Observer

Ravenscroft third-graders Allison Arber and Ryan Gerard are leading a shoe drive to collect new and gently used shoes for Soles4Souls, a nonprofit organization whose mission is "to impact as many lives as possible with the gift of shoes."

The New Balance Store in Raleigh provided containers for the Ravenscroft students.
Ravenscroft's involvement with the project began when Ryan went into the New Balance store to purchase a new pair of shoes and was asked by a New Balance employee if he would like to donate his old ones to Soles4Souls, according to a press release from the school.

"This is a really great program that started in the wake of the 2004 tsunami," said Mark Allard, who owns the Raleigh and Durham New Balance stores with his wife, Kathy.

Mark Allard said that Soles4Souls delivered more than a million pairs to victims of Hurricane Katrina and 50,000 pairs to victims of the wildfires in California.

Ryan donated his own shows to the organization then realized that collecting shoes would make a good service project. He then asked Allison, who attends the same church as him, to get involved.

The students approached Ravenscroft's Lower School director about sponsoring the project and then created and distributed fliers promoting the shoe drive throughout the Lower School.

Anyone wishing to donate new or gently used shoes to Soles4Souls may bring them to the New Balance Store at 6204 Glenwood Ave in Raleigh.

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