May 4, 2019

Photo by Dan Hall The shoes and socks, were picked up by the Rotary District 6040 shoe caravan and shipped to nonprofit Buckner International of Dallas. Pictured here (left to right in photo), are Rotarians Kenny Harris, John Gill, Larry Lunsford, and Cassy Venters who all assisted with this years truck caravan to pick up shoes in Northern Missouri. All four Rotarians are District 6040 Past District Governors.

By Dan Hall

Lee’s Summit’s three Rotary Clubs collected over 1,618 pairs of new shoes, and 854 pairs of socks for orphan children. These shoes, and socks were delivered to the Rotary District Conference Saturday, April 27, in Cameron, MO.

Shoes drive organizer, Larry Lunsford, said: “This was another amazing weekend to culminate this year’s Shoes for Orphan Souls collection.” Lunsford reported that, “when our final tally was reported by club representatives in Cameron, we were proud to see that nearly 19,000 pairs of shoes, over 3,000 pairs of socks, over 1,200 pairs of shoelaces, and nearly $12,000 in cash donations had been received in this year’s collection efforts!”

This was Rotary District 6040 (56 clubs in metro KC and Northern Missouri) 18th year helping children get new shoes. “Many children in orphanages have never had a new pair of shoes, let alone any shoes at all, reported Dan Hall, Rotary 6040 Past District Governor. Hall, who traveled to The Dominican Republic with a past shoes delivery said, “It is heart rendering to have little children hug you and cry with joy when you place a new pair of shoes on their feet.”

“Most Americans take shoes for granted, but for many children around the world, they are a luxury. Shoes protect feet from diseases such as hookworm, which can lead to physical and cognitive development issues, and provide children with an opportunity to attend school,” said Rachel Wallis, director of Buckner Shoes for Orphan Souls.

Lee’s Summit Rotary Club Shoes Chair, Barb Prestage, said: “Our annual drive would not be possible without the support of our local businesses, churches, retailers and civic groups – and of course, it’s the generosity and love of our town’s residents that bring hope to thousands of kids each year.”

Rotary District 6040 shipped the 19,000 pairs of shoes to nonprofit Buckner International in Dallas. The shoes will be sorted and distributed by Buckner to children in countries like Kenya, Romania, and The Dominican Republic.

Buckner Shoes for Orphan Souls®, provides new shoes and socks to orphan children in the United States and throughout the world. Since 1999, Buckner Shoes has collected and distributed nearly 4 million pairs of new shoes, serving children in more than 80 countries. Thirty percent of the shoes benefit children living in the U.S. For more information about organizing a shoe drive and volunteer opportunities, contact Dan Hall

District 6040 Shoes Coordinator, Larry Lunsford, concluded: “Over Rotary’s 18 years of collecting shoes, we have now collected over 339,000 pairs of new shoes.