Shoes for a cause

Jan 26, 2019

Dartmouth High School’s Class of 2021 is raising money while doing good this year as it collects gently used shoes.

Through the Shoebox Recycling Program, the class will send shoes to those in need, benefit the environment by keeping the shoes in use, and raise money towards future events including the junior banquet, senior prom, and graduation. The program will send the class money based on the amount of shoes donated.

“It’s been kind of a town effort,” said Bridget Taylor, a class advisor and special education teacher.

The class has been collecting shoes in boxes at the high school and several elementary schools, and also held a drive at Southworth Library on Saturday, Jan. 26. So far, about 20 boxes of shoes — each box can hold 40 lbs. — have been collected, and the drive will last through the end of the year. The organization will send the class about $100 for every five boxes of shoes.

Jessica Brittingham, another class advisor and an English teacher, said that the service element of the fundraiser appealed to her when she first heard about it, and inspired her to bring it to the class leadership.

“If we can help others, I think it’s definitely going to make a difference,” said Mya Leonardo, class president and Miss Quequechan Outstanding Teen.

The fundraiser, Brittingham noted, might also be getting a boost from the recent popularity of Marie Kondo’s Netflix series about organization and getting rid of excess possessions.

The drive also gives people the opportunity to connect with people across the globe with the “Sole Mates” program, which encourages people to leave a note or picture inside the donated shoes for whoever ends up receiving them.

The drive accepts a variety of shoes, including men’s, women’s, and children’s shoes, sneakers, casual and dress shoes, boots, soccer cleats, sandals, heels, flats, and loafers. Shoes must be in pairs. Certain shoes like skates, winter boots, slippers, flip flops, shoes with metal spikes, and women’s fashion boots will not be accepted.

Donations are accepted at the high school, Cushman School, Quinn, and Potter Elementary.