WEBSTER COUNTY, Ky. (5/22/13) - Happy Feet Equals Learning Feet, a program started by Jerry Baird of Union County, was at Dixon Elementary Thursday morning for the annual “fitting day”. Webster County students were fitted for new shoes they will receive at the start of the 2013-2014 school year.
“The concept behind the program is that when I find out there is a need for shoes in a school, we speak with the school corporation and get their permission,” Baird said. “Then we organize a local committee, who handles fund raising. Then we have our fitting day.”
The Family Resource Youth Service Center (FRYSC) representative at each school makes the determination of which students are in need. Fitting and distribution days are then determined for each school.
Each county is handled differently. Some give the students their new shoes for Christmas. In Webster County the shoes are handed out in time for the start of the school year.
“The biggest thrill is when we deliver the shoes and the kids turn to their mom and dad and tell them ‘these are the shoes I picked out’,” Baird said.
Volunteers from various local agencies and businesses were involved in fitting day. One of those was Webster County Jailer Terry Elder.
““I’ve been here since this started,” he said. “All three years. It’s a good thing and the kids are as nice as could be.”
Representatives from Shoe Carnival in Evansville provided the shoes that were used during the fitting, and a number of employees volunteered as well. In all five employees of the shoe store made the trip to Dixon.
“We’ve been working with Jerry for years,” said Kelly Wiggs, the general manager of Shoe Carnival. It’s great to have an opportunity to lend our support and help the community. We look forward to this every year, and hopefully many years to come.”
Baird said to find out more about the Happy Feet program, visit them on Facebook.
J-E News Editor
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