YMCA hosts Soles with Goals

Published 3:25 pm Thursday, December 7, 2017


By JOYANNA LOVE/ Senior Staff Writer

The Chilton County YMCA is helping the community get in the giving spirit by collecting gently used shoes through Soles with Goals.

“We thought this was the perfect time of year as people are cleaning out their closets and things like that,” YMCA director Lori Patterson said. “It will give them a chance to donate instead of throwing them away.”

Collection will begin on Dec. 11, and shoes will be accepted until Jan. 31.

“The soles have to be intact,” local project director Ashley Owen said. “If they have shoe strings, then you have to have the shoe strings.”

The shoe drive is collecting all sizes in men’s, women’s and children’s shoes.

Many local organizations are partnering with the Y as collection locations. Locations include Clanton and Jemison elementary schools, Chilton County Children’s Club, Elite Salon, St. Vincent’s Chilton, Chilton County High School SGA, Jemison High School SGA and the YMCA.

Collection boxes will be at each location during normal operating hours.

Soles with Goals was chosen as the name for the project because the shoe donations will accomplish three objectives. Owen said it will provide jobs for people in developing countries with work to refurbish the shoes and sell them, other shoes will be given to those who need them in developing countries and the local YMCA can raise money for scholarships for students to participate in Y activities.

Owen said Fund2Orgs will pay 40 cents per pound for the shoes collected, if the Chilton County YMCA reaches or exceeds their goal of collecting 2,500 pairs of shoes.

Shoes must be in pairs and will be kept together with rubber bands. The Y will then pack them up for Fund2Orgs to distribute to foreign countries.

“People are always sending us things about missions projects and ways that the Y can help different organizations,” Patterson said. “It was just one that caught my eye.”

She discussed the idea with Y instructors and the board of director about the possibility of doing the project, and it grew from there.

Patterson said she felt most people would be able to find multiple pairs in their closets to donate.