• Bob Vlach, Woodford Sun Staff

Shoe donations needed for good start to school year

With back to school shopping getting ready to begin, people in the community are being asked to donate new athletic shoes so less-fortunate Woodford County Middle School students will get off to a good start on the first day of school Thursday, Aug. 9.

“We’re trying to provide a new pair of shoes and a fresh haircut for students who don’t usually get that sort of luxury before the first day of school,” said WCMS counselor Kelly Sayre.

Shoes (larger youth 4 to 7 sizes or adult 5 to 11 sizes) may be dropped off at the Woodford County and Midway Branch public libraries, WCMS, Woodford County Public Schools central office and Versailles United Methodist Church through July 26. Organizers hope to provide new shoes to 100 students receiving free and reduced lunches, Sayre said.

She said the event – dubbed #FirstDayFresh – already has three volunteers to provide haircuts on July 27, but “would love to have more.”

Students will also pick out their shoes on that day.

“Middle school is a very difficult time – especially for young girls – as far as body image goes and being able to fit in, but boys suffer with those same sorts of insecurities,” said Sayre. “… So anything that we can do to help the students feel like they belong and that they fit in a little bit easier, that’s going to boost their confidence a little bit so that they can get a good start to the school year. That’s what our hope is.” Besides the support of its community partners, Sayre said the event would not be possible without “a huge group of teachers” and others in the schools that have gotten behind #FirstDayFresh. The event was initiated by WCMS teachers without a family resource center and access to state funding, Sayre said.

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