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Putting shoes on beautiful feet.

October 31, 2012


“There will always be poor people in the land. Therefore I command you to be openhanded toward your brothers and toward the poor and needy in your land.”

Deuteronomy 15:11


Remember Sushi for Shoes?  A combined effort between Hope and Friendship Foundation, Kitaro Steak & Sushi Grill, and our wonderful and beautiful Viviana of Petal Play Designs ( being the hostess with the mostest???  It has been a dream of mine for years to put new shoes on some of the little feet that I see wearing the most worn out footwear.  Well $600 was raised to gift the neediest of our youth with new school shoes, and many many gently used shoes and boots were donated and gifted as well (Kids boots and shoes are and will remain needed- email me for drop off locations). 

I went to Kohl’s and priced youth shoes and walked out depressed.  With what we raised (that I am so grateful and excited to have witnessed!!!) we would be able to gift 12 pair of shoes.  Funny now that I type that out I remember that 12 people participated in the very first Hope and Friendship Event:  Christmas Dinner of 2005.  Yep 12 is a good number J 

So 12 gift cards were given to 12 of our young friends who live in some of the most struggling households in our community and who truly needed to have their tattered and worn shoes replaced, along with specific instructions to either ask me to take them shoe shopping or to present to me the receipt and if possible a picture.  That very night I received a picture and a text that brought tears to my eyes.  The holey bottomed pair of shoes that I saw worn at the Hope and Friendship Unbirthday Party had been replaced.  A text that read:  “Thank you so much.  She wanted these shoes forever and I just could not afford them.  She is so excited and can’t wait to wear them to school on Monday.  Thank you so much!”  Then the next night my doorbell rang and at the door was another one of our young friends and her mom who brought the receipt and proof in person (no ability to take a picture she came in person)  This young girl was so very proud of her new pair of Nikes and glowing with the biggest smile I’ve ever seen on her.  I wish I could’ve captured it and shared it with you.   With that memory and a picture on my phone of a beautiful little girl smiling ear to ear wearing her new pair of shoes (one that I will save on my phone) these smiles are motivation to remember that there will always be need and there is always something that we can do to try and meet that need. 

Special thanks to Carrie & John, owners of Kitaro for making this possible and to my amazing friend Viviana owner of Petal Play Design for being the “draw” of the night with her charisma and beautiful spirit who wowed the crowd and drew the donations.  And to all of you who came out to enjoy sushi, donated and made this possible.  12 of our most impressionable young friends are walking around sporting proudly a new pair of shoes because of you!


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