Charity is good for the 'sole' - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Charity is good for the 'sole'

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - The second annual "Warm Hearts, Warm Soles" shoe drive took place on at St. Bernards Health and Wellness Institute in Jonesboro.

Mickey Ryan with 103.9 The Game, and founder of this fundraiser, says this all started when he saw someone in need. "Last year around this time, I saw a young man downtown," Mickey said. "I was making a donation at the Salvation Army and the young man was playing out front without adequate shoes. His feet were hanging off the back. I tried and tried to find that young man, later. I was going to give him a pair of my own shoes. I didn't find him. And I just wanted to do something to make sure no child would go without."

Mickey decided to reach out to the community and Region 8 residents responded. "I've said it before and I'll say it again," Mickey stated. "The people of Northeast Arkansas are the greatest people to help their neighbors. There's no better place than Northeast Arkansas as far as people stepping up. We got over three hundred pairs of usable shoes last year."

They sat themselves up inside St. Bernards Health and Wellness Center hoping to catch people's attention, and Mickey said Wednesday morning kicked off with a bang. "As people come in, maybe just to work out, and ask us what we're doing and we tell them they've been running home to get shoes and coming back," Mickey said. "Some people who even knew about it and brought shoes have said, 'You know what I'm going to go to my neighbor's house, friend's house and ask them. People here just want to help."

Executive Director for Health Care Medical Group, Christina Ryan, says people need to be grateful for the blessings in their life and pass it on. "So many times we all take for granted the fact that we have all the things that we need," Christina said. "We have coats to put on our kids before they go to school and they have shoes that fit and there are just a lot of us who take stuff for granted. So, I would just encourage people to be thankful for the things they have and to help out those who really need."

Mickey is asking Region 8 residents to take a moment to stop and look around, "I think we all sort of get caught up in our own world sometimes and we think if our stomach is full and we've got shoes on our feet and a coat on our back then everybody does. But that's just not the case. You don't have to look very hard or very far to see the need in this community."

This year's goal is 500 pairs of shoes. For those you miss the drive, you can still help.

Mickey says anyone can contact them through 103.9 The Game and they'll make sure any additional donations get to the local YMCA.

From there, the shoes will be distributed to those in need. For information about the shoe drive, log onto their website.

Copyright 2012 KAIT. All rights reserved.

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