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Shawe student leads effort to collect shoes for those in need
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Tuesday, April 09, 2013 11:00 AM
MAKING A DONATION: Alex Reuss, left, and Jared Rampy drop off shoes at the Shawe Memorial High School donation site for the Soles4Souls shoe drive Monday. The drive, organized by Shawe freshman Skip Maas, will run through the end of the week with collection sites at Shawe and Pope John XXIII Elementary School. (Staff photo by Ken Ritchieemail@example.com)
When it comes to donating footwear, Skip Maas is a shoe-in.
The Shawe Memorial High School freshman got the idea to start a shoe drive at his school after he saw an advertisement in one of his mother's magazines.
The ad was for Soles4Souls, a Nashville-based charity that collects shoes and distributes them to people in need. Since its founding, the charity has distributed at least 19 million pairs of shoes to people in more than 125 countries.
Soles4Souls was originally known as Katrina Shoes. The non-profit donated shoes to people affected by Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
"They take shoes to disaster areas in the U.S. and around the world," Maas said.
Maas is involved in the Boy Scouts of America and the Shawe soccer, cross country and track teams, but this is the first time he's taken charge of organizing a charity drive.
"It sounded like a fun, good way to take action and do a service project. It gets shoes to people who need them and don't have them," Maas said about his first charity drive.
Teresa Torline, a math teacher at Shawe, is who Maas went to with the idea. He says she's helped him put the drive together.
"Mrs. Torline has been an amazing help," Maas said. "Some of the other teachers have had input here and there, too."
Maas put together a four-person committee to plan the promotion and logistics of the shoe drive. The National Junior Honor Society is also helping with the drive.
The actual drive started Monday.
After the daily announcements each day, students who bring shoes to donate will bring their shoes to special donating bins in the school lobby.
The school will put up posters at both Pope John Elementary and Shawe. Shoe facts will be included in the announcements to build awareness for the shoe drive.
Maas said the goal for both schools is to collect 350 pair of shoes. If the goal is reached, students will have a dress down day on Monday, April 14, where students will not have to wear school uniforms.
Maas said he hopes the drive will be successful enough to make the shoe drive a recurring event.
"If it goes well, I'd love to do another next year," he said.
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