The majority of people would agree that the Christmas and holiday season is a time of giving. However, the staff, faculty, and students at Ross Medical Education Center of Lansing, Michigan believe the warmth and generosity conveyed throughout the holidays should extend into the New Year and beyond. In fact, why does it ever need to stop? With this in mind, they started 2017 with a drive to collect new and gently used men’s, women’s, and children’s shoes and boots for Footprints of Michigan, a local non-profit organization.
It actually all started during the holidays when Lansing Office Assistant Debbie Majinska was struck by some inspiration. “On Christmas Eve, a local news channel aired a moving segment about Footprints’ Christmas Eve Soup for the Soul 2016 event,” she shared. “Our Lansing campus is always looking for worthy, reputable organizations where we feel our staff and students can actually make an impact… and I knew immediately this was one of those causes. I spoke with our Director, Michelle Rodesiler, and we set a plan in action. It always amazes me how one seemingly small gesture can mean so much in the life of another. We simply have to open our hearts and souls – remaining ever mindful of opportunities that surround us every day to help those less fortunate than ourselves.”
Once it was decided that this was an organization they wanted to give to, the campus got to work. The staff, faculty, and students at Ross in Lansing brought in their lightly used shoes and boots, exciting to be a part of helping those in need. As versatile shoe options were requested in particular, many at the campus brought in tennis shoes throughout the drive. By the end of it all, the Ross Lansing campus was pleased to donate several boxes filled with shoes and boots of all sizes to Footprints of Michigan. The organization made the process simple; when the drive came to a close, Footprints of Michigan sent a representative to the campus to pick up the donations. Career Services Representative Shari Brooks shared her thoughts, “partnering with Footprints of Michigan is another example of community service opportunities used to develop our students’ ability to create rapport. Giving of your resources, time and talents can be just the thing needed to brighten someone’s day.”
Footprints of Michigan accepts donations of shoes, both new and slightly used, and then in turn distributes them to the homeless and others in need in throughout the mid-Michigan area. Warm, comfortable shoes and boots are something that many Michiganders may take for granted; however, for many others, a pair of shoes or boots in good repair can provide the means to survive the sometimes brutal Michigan winters. The Footprints of Michigan website explains: “There are numerous men, women, and children in your community who go barefoot or wear footwear that has been completely worn out and cannot afford to buy footwear, which leads them to be more susceptible to disease and/or injury, not to mention discomfort.” Organizations like this one help make sure that each Michigan resident that needs shoes to keep out the elements gets them.
If you would like to donate to this worthy cause, please contact Footprints of Michigan at firstname.lastname@example.org, 1-877-811-SHOE, visit their website at www.footprintsofmichigan.org, or visit the Footprints of Michigan Facebook page and post a message. They make every effort to respond to your question the same day.