By CRA News Service
DELRAY BEACH – Honor Roll fifth-grade students at Village Academy on Tuesday will receive hand-painted Toms Shoes donated by students at Saint Andrews School in Boca Raton. Earlier this month, Saint Andrews’ fifth graders painted the shoes, provided by a parent donor in association with Sound Tree Entertainment to supply underserved children at home and abroad with shoes.
“This means a lot to our students and it motivates those who didn’t make the honor roll to motivate them to try harder,” said Village Academy Principal Guarn Sims. “It’s no secret that many of our kids come from struggling financial situations, so a new pair of shoes is truly a gift—especially during this time of year. We appreciate the support from Saint Andrews.”
Twenty three students will be presented a pair of the one-of-a-kind shoes during a ceremony commencing at 8 a.m. and recognizing the parent donor for her generous gift.
“Our 5th graders were really moved by TOMS Shoes’ story and commitment to giving. During this holiday season, they enjoyed knowing that the very shoes that they had styled and painted would be donated for the benefit of other elementary aged students right next door in Delray Beach.” said Dr. Carlos Barroso from Saint Andrew’s School.
Since 2006, Toms Shoe founder Blake Mycoskie has been matching purchased shoes and donating a pair to a child in need to prevent diseases that children can contract through the feet. Many children in developing nations walk long distances to get food and medical help.
For each pair of shoes Toms Shoes sells, it gives a pair away to one of these children. The company has given away more than a million shoes and reached out through thousands of students across the country. St. Andrews is one of the 1,800 U.S. schools representing the company’s mission, said Executive Producer Gregory James Blount of Sound Tree Entertainment, which organized the event. In October, Blount brought The Disney Channel’s ANT Farm star, Jake Short, to South Florida to kick off an earlier Toms Shoes hand-painted shoe exchange.
Short then visited Village Academy and challenged the students to follow their dreams and reach for the stars. “It’s great to see kids take the initiative to help others in the community and stars such as Jake, give back, and have fun in the process. That is what the holiday spirit is all about” Blount said.
Mycoskie, an entrepreneur from Texas, not a man named “Tom,” started the company. The name Toms Shoes actually stands for Tomorrow’s Future.
The shoes cost between $40 and $100 a pair, according to Tom’s Shoes Web site. Most are slip-ons or low-rise, laced shoes and made from burlap, corduroy, or canvas.
For more information, call 561-404-4290.