Bless Their Soles is collecting flip flops for kids - WOWK 13 Charleston, Huntington WV News, Weather, Sports

Bless Their Soles is collecting flip flops for kids

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Jackson County, OH - We are just getting into the thick of flip-flop season, that's if your family can afford new shoes.

For too many who can't, there's one fast growing footwear drive that's running full speed into the summer.

More than two thirds of Jackson County, OH's Northview Elementary School students live below the poverty level. And while the summer free meal program helps fill hungry tummies, there a growing worry about neglecting those tiny toesies

Local Activist Jaime Manring explains: "I've seen a lot of kids going barefoot, a lot of kids can't provide for their children. So, I thought lets do this hand in hand and make sure we can cover their feet and fill their bellies this summer."

Partnering with the poverty-fighting non-profit group RSVP, Jaime Manring's goal with Bless Their Soles is to get 600 pairs of flip flops on needed Jackson and Gallia County, OH kids' feet all summer long. 

Rev. Tim Jones with RSVP tells us: "Children can re-use shirts and pants but shoes are pretty much a one time go.  Children are hard on shoes and a lot of kids only get shoes once a year, at the beginning of school. When school lets out, shoes are over, summer is here and it's hard."

Bless Their Soles is going viral, in which local business church and civic groups are joining the drive.  Parents and grandparents are not flip flopping about what many call a godsend. 

Grandparent Barb McCoy says "It's tough. Shoes are expensive and some parents can't afford them."

For many kids, sneakers are the footwear of choice, but in the summertime, flip flops are cool.

Sixth grader Gabe Bertschi says "They're nice. Especially at Boy Scout camp when you have to take a shower, they're nice."

Bless Their Soles has hundreds now putting their best feet forward

If you want to know more or get involved in this growing footwear drive, go to the new "Bless Their Soles" Facebook site at this link.