"Sponsor A Sole" drive helping children who need new shoes - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

"Sponsor A Sole" drive helping children who need new shoes

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Eau Claire (WQOW)- The excitement of a new school year has passed and many students have already broken in their back to school essentials, new backpacks, clothes, even shoes. But for some, the price of back to school shopping this year was more than what the family budget could handle. As the weather turns cooler that's left a number of students without the things they badly need.

This fall staff are noticing the number of students with shoes that are too small and have too many holes.

"They're the shoes that other people might have taken to Goodwill, maybe half a year ago. And these students are still wearing them because that's all that they have and for one reason or another they are not able to get a different pair," says Dani Claesges who works with the Eau Claire area school district's homeless program.  She was alarmed by how many kids are badly in need of shoes, an added stress for students already dealing with a difficult situation. "It's very hard to concentrate on your schooling when you're worried about where you're going to go tonight and who's place your going to be sleeping at," added Claesges.

This fall, the community is being called on to "Sponsor A Sole" by donating new, or like new shoes. As the weather gets colder, warmer shoes, as well as clothes, move to the top of the wish list. "If anyone has some extra snowboots we are very open to that, along with snowpants and winter jackets," continued Claesges. "Those are the 3 big needs we have in the program as it gets colder."

Shoes in sizes children's 11 through men's size 13 are needed. If you'd like to sponsor a child call 715-797-6751.

This year already 51 students have been referred to the district's homeless program. That's 15 more than this same time last fall.

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