"If you give five shoes away to six kids, that 6th child is going to feel real bad because he didn't get any. The comment I got was, ‘Your exactly right give them to everybody’."
- Joshua's Storehouse CEO Jay Martin
CASPER, WY - Joshua's Storehouse gave over $300,000 worth of Sketchers brand shoes to needy children.
The 27,000 pairs of shoes spanned the entire warehouse at Keyhole Outdoor Living and with the help of volunteers kids will start their day with better strides.
"If you give five shoes away to six kids, that 6th child is going to feel real bad because he didn't get any. The comment I got was, ‘Your exactly right give them to everybody’, said Joshua's Storehouse CEO Jay Martin. “They upped my order to 7,000 and here we are. We're giving shoes to every child in the school districts throughout the state."
Help from charities around the nation really helped this event become a huge success for the state.
"This is one of our largest events. Its a non-fundraising event the funds for this were donated by the Gertrude Camp foundation. They insist that their money goes to benefit children. We took that money and it was met 20 to one," said Martin.
This is not the first time Joshua's volunteers distributed so many shoes.
"Last year we got a nice donation from Ugg boots. It was a wide variety of male female shoes. Different sizes and things like that. That was kind of a last minute thing," said Natrona County Homeless Liaison Greta Hinderliter.
Natrona county schools students are working with the group to help sort and distribute the shoes around the state.
"We don’t have all the school sizes yet so we only did a 10th of all the elementary schools today. Tomorrow we'll come back and then depending on how far we get tomorrow, we’ll have to come to Thursday," said Natrona County Student Council President Valerie Williams.
No one is paid or has government involvement, it’s just people helping people.
"I love doing this kind of stuff. I love giving back to my community. I know that homelessness is a big problem here in Casper. If I can help give something to them, I know that smile on the kid’s faces is totally worth it," said Natrona County Student Council Member Kassandera Witt.
The students divide the shoes into bags by grades and schools for distribution.
Nearly 30 kids helped Tuesday and volunteers expect the same amount of help tomorrow.
All the schools in the state requested the number of shoes they required for needy students and volunteers begin dropping the shoes off Tuesday.