Church holds missions shoe drive

Published 11:02 pm Friday, June 6, 2014

Jordan Bates, the youth and missions intern at Westminster Reformed Presbyterian Church, shows off some of the shoes already donated to the church in support of an upcoming missions trip.

Jordan Bates, the youth and missions intern at Westminster Reformed Presbyterian Church, shows off some of the shoes already donated to the church in support of an upcoming missions trip.

A Suffolk church is collecting shoes to help fund its summer mission trip to New York.

The group from Westminster Reformed Presbyterian Church will serve with Operation Exodus for a week, July 26-Aug. 2. The inner-city ministry offers educational services for Hispanic children and families who live near or below the poverty line, according to its website.

Jordan Bates, the church’s youth and missions intern, said the group will be assisting with such things as crafts and Bible stories during the summer program.

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“We’ll be building relationships with the kids and sharing Jesus with them,” she said.

To fund the trip, they hope to collect 7,500 pairs of shoes for an organization called Funds2orgs.

“They pay us 40 cents per shoe that we collect,” she said. “They ship them overseas, and it helps start micro-enterprises there for people that are living in poverty.”

The shoes are delivered to people who can clean and repair them and then sell them, or melt the materials and make new pairs of shoes to be sold, according to information from the organization’s website.

As a plus, the program helps keep the shoes out of landfills. More than 600 million pairs of shoes are thrown away each year, according to Funds2orgs.

“I’m sure we can get people from the community to clean out their closets and bring some shoes,” Bates said.

Any condition, size, shape or color of shoe is acceptable, Bates said. There is a July 13 deadline to turn them in.

The shoes can be dropped off at the church, 3488 Godwin Blvd. Bates also hopes to get drop boxes at a few local businesses. Folks can also pick up bags to collect in their neighborhood.

For more information, call Bates at 539-0540, extension 133.