Shelburne Family Chiropractic & Wellness Centre is working to ensure those in need have good and reliable shoes with their 6th annual Shoes4Shelburne campaign.
“We’re really excited to be back another year,” said Alexandra Georgie, co-founder of Shoes4Shelburne. “I feel every year it’s becoming more rewarding in the sense of spreading goodness and positivity through the community. We’re happy we’re still able to support more community members who may be unable to purchase their own shoes but have an outlet where they can still have shoes to support their foot and overall health.”
Started six years ago by local chiropractor Dr. Richard Magder and Alexandra Georgie from Shelburne Family Chiropractic, Shoes4Shelburne has been an annual initiative focused on providing new and gently used shoes to Shelburne and Dufferin County residents.
The inspiration for the campaign came after a pair of Dr. Magder’s shoes were stolen when left outside to dry.
“It’s very rewarding that we were able to turn a negative situation to something positive and extend that positivity over many years now, to support our community,” said Georgie.
In the first year, Shoes4Shelburne was launched, the initiative was able to collect around 500 pairs of shoes. Since then, the number of pairs of shoes donated has grown steadily.
While in the past the local initiative has set a shoe collection goal, this year their focus is on quality of the shoes over quantity.
“It’s a bit of a different goal this year in terms of the amount we collect versus the quality. In other years we would set a collection amount, but we found when we pushed that message that [we] were getting all kinds of shoes that weren’t necessarily in great condition or warrant good support,” said Georgie. “This year, we’ve changed our messaging to focus more on the quality of shoes we collect.”
The local shoe collection initiative is also partnering with the food bank, Shepherd’s Cupboard, to help register and distribute pairs of shoes to community members in need.
When an individual visits the food bank, they will be provided with a flyer with options for them to fill out regarding the type of shoe, quantity, size, and gender.
“They provide us all that information and once the collection drive has ended, we sort through all the shoes that we have to match up with the request from applicants,” explained Georgie.
So far, Shoes4Shelburne has already had 14 families or individuals register for the program, but with the Christmas Hamper registration events coming up on Nov. 30 and Dec. 1, Georgie said they expect the number to grow.
“In the first year we probably saw about 20 families, and it seems to increase about 10 to 15 each year.”
She added that they expect there to be between 50 to 70 families and individuals utilizing Shoes4Shelburne this year.
The 6th annual Shoes4Shelburne kicked off on Nov. 7 and will run until Nov. 28.
Shoes4Shelburne is looking to collect footwear for all ages and genders including winter boots, running shoes, flat dress shoes, work boots, infant and baby shoes, and senior shoes with good support
The shoes will be handed out to the families and individuals during the Christmas Hamper pick up on Dec. 17.
Donations of new and gently used shoes can be dropped off at the Shelburne Family Chiropractic & Wellness Centre, located at 310 Main Street E.
Paula Brown, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Shelburne Free Press