ST. LOUIS – Near Southside Employment Coalition (NSEC) is looking to partner with local businesses and organizations to collect new and gently worn tennis shoes for developing nations like Haiti.
Sneakers for Good is a fundraiser through Funds2Orgs where organizations, like NSEC, can get paid to collect donated shoes while repurposing those donated shoes helps the environment and gives a hand-up to micro-entrepreneurs in developing nations.
NSEC is working with local partners to collect at least 100 bags of shoes. The shoes will be sent to the people of Haiti to help them make a living through employment and revenue, and the funds received from each shoe bag will be put back into the agency to pay for transportation assistance to St. Louisans seeking employment in the area.
“We thought this would tie in well with what we do here with helping people find employment,” said Reverend Ohala Ward. “It’s a win-win situation where we are able to reach out and help others outside of this country that are in need as well as carry on our mission here.”
The students at Cardinal Ritter College Prep High School are working closely with business manager April Brown to help with the fundraiser. Brown has served on the board for Near Southside Employment Coalition for seven years.
“Our kids do a lot of stuff in the community,” she said. “I put an email out and asked them to donate any shoes they may have and are not using anymore, so they all jumped in and said they’d help out.”
Reverend Ward would like to see more schools, businesses, and organizations get involved, as well as individual community members. You can create your own drop-off donation station or use the ones located at Cardinal Ritter and the NSEC Headquarters.
For more information, you can visit the Near Southside Employment Coalition website, visit the headquarters at 2649 Pestalozzi Street, or call the headquarters and ask for Reverend Ward at 314-865-4435.
The “Sneakers for Good” fundraiser ends Oct. 9. Drop-off hours are between 10:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.