LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18)– Friday morning, 400 students at William Wells Elementary received new shoes.
Congressman Andy Barr recommended the school to a national organization called Shoes That Fit. Together with the local donations from “Judy Construction,” and “Hall’s Beer Cheese” the large gift came to life.
“Some kids have a lot, some kids don’t so, you know. It’s just like, a lot of single parents can’t get these kids shoes so it’s just like, it’s just a blessing that they just want to come out and give us shoes,” said fifth-grader Nazari Gillispie.
“You know, I remember a lot of days that I had to wait for my brothers to wear out a pair of shoes for me to get my older brother’s shoes,” said former University of Kentucky basketball player Jack “Goose” Givens.
Givens was one of two special sports guests who handed out the new shoes to the students. He grew up in the neighborhood the school is in. He said it was a four-minute walk from William Well Elementary to his home.
“For these kids, I mean, shoes are an important thing, you know, just to see the fun they had in here today while they were waiting their turn. It is a basic need, you know, they need good shoes,” said Jacob Tamme, a former player for UK and the NFL.
Gillispie told LEX 18 that he hopes his classmates see the significance of this gift.
“They just worry about the color and the fit, it’s not the color and the fit. It’s just the personality and, you know, at least you have shoes on your feet and clothes on your back,” he said.
If you’re interested in bringing this program to a school near you, all it takes are some local sponsors for the shoes and logistical organizing with Shoes That Fit.