Pam Dudding-Burch Contributing writer
“Spring cleaning” is quickly entering the minds of many and The Hope Center in Catawba, Virginia, is hoping to seize an opportunity to make the most of it. Located on the grounds of Grace Assembly of God, The Hope Center is sponsoring a shoe drive to raise funds to assist their vision to care for adults who may need assistance.
A company called Funds2Orgs pays groups to collect shoes for them to send overseas to other countries. The shoes are then cleaned and/or repaired and sold to support small businesses. Proceeds from the shoe sales are used to feed, clothe and house those individual families.
Funds2Orgs helps impoverished people start, maintain and grow businesses in countries such as Haiti, Honduras and other nations in Central America and Africa. One lady entrepreneur in Haiti was very happy, as she earned enough money to send to her son to law school. The Hope Center has chosen this drive as it is also a mission.
Rev. Loraine Taylor is the Sr. Pastor at Grace Assembly. She, as well as the congregation, has had a vision for many years to assist the elderly population in the community to live out their life for as long as possible. “We want to make a difference simply because we love people and we care,” Taylor shared. “We have been working towards this and gathering information for about six years now.”
Funds2Orgs shoe drive accepts any kind of shoes or boots, and even flip flops! The shoes collected can be used or new. The amount of funds received depends on the number of shoes collected.
One community member offered to check with her work place to see if they would be willing to place a box in their business to help with the mission. Other community members are welcome to do the same. A box will be provided to anyone who would like to help, and assistance in collecting the shoes on a timely basis.
Another positive fact about Funds2Orgs sending shoes overseas is that they support micro-enterprises while reducing what goes into our own landfills here in America.
Anyone can help by donating gently worn, used or new shoes. The Hope Center has drop off boxes located in many stores and churches in Craig and Salem. Some are: Food Country, Citgo IGA Express, The Emporium, Pine Top Restaurant, The Craig County Library, Bibo’s Pizzeria, The Craig County Child Care Center, The Commons, Crossroads Church, Craig County Community Church, St. Francis Catholic Church, Orange Market, Christian Life International and Cotton Chiropractic. You may contact The Hope Center, Sandy Jones, at (540) 384-7075 or via email at [email protected].
The goal is set to collect 200 bags of shoes by the end of April. Each bag from Funds2Orgs holds 25 pair of shoes. Sandy Jones, Administrative Assistant to Pastor Taylor is overseeing this project. “We know it is a lot and even hope to surprise ourselves and collect more if possible,” Jones shared.