PRESTONSBURG — After a local shoe store began collecting shoes for needy families, a local church made sure they had plenty to give, dropping off over 600 pairs Monday.
Shoe Sensation stores began collecting shoes Dec. 4 for the Soles4Souls program, which provides shoes to poverty-stricken families around the world. As part of the effort, the store gave 20-percent discounts to anyone donating a pair of new or lightly used shoes. The collection effort ended Monday.
The timing of the program lined up perfectly for the Little Paint First Church of God, which had begun its own effort to collect shoes for Soles4Souls back in September. That effort ended Sunday, when the church’s youth group presented a musical performance, “The Christmas Shoe Tree.”
As they rehearsed for the program, members of the youth group donated and collected shoes, ending up with 620 pairs.
Dianne White, director of the Children’s Ministry, said it was a fortuitous coincidence that she learned of Shoe Sensation’s collection.
“I was looking online for somewhere to send all these shoes, when I just happened to see that they were collecting them here,” White said. “That really worked out for us, because we were looking at having to pay shipping of a dollar a pair to send them elsewhere.”
On Monday, White and fellow church member Raymond Hayden delivered enough bags of shoes to fill a pickup truck bed to the store.
All of the shoes collected will now be sent to Soles4Souls’ headquarters in Nashville, Tenn. From there, they will end up going to people who need them all over the United States and elsewhere in the world.