Dayton, Ohio – The Dragons and Vectren will honor Shoes 4 the Shoeless during the unique “Community All-Stars” program on Monday, June 25, at 7:00 p.m. when the Dayton Dragons take on the Great Lakes Loons at Fifth Third Field.
The Dayton community is a great place to live, work and play. But what makes Dayton truly great are the people that call Dayton home. We have great people and great organizations in our community that do incredible things each and every day. Throughout the season, the Dragons and Vectren will honor five “All-Stars” with a special inning break tribute in recognition of their service.
Shoes 4 the Shoeless Story: “Shoes & Socks Bring Hope”
Kris Horlacher is a nurse by trade, but a decade ago she began devoting her time to a tutoring and mentoring program for homeless kids. Whether it’s finding food to eat or shelter for the night, these children have plenty of needs, and something that is often overlooked is their feet. According to Horlacher, “a pair of shoes and socks that are in good condition and fit, is the biggest unmet need for children living in poverty.” After researching, they found only a few organizations nationwide who provide these resources. They did not appear to be highly effective so, in 2010, Horlacher decided to take action into her own hands.
Within the first year of forming Shoes for the Shoeless (S4TS), Horlacher and her team won the Pepsi Refresh competition, a nationwide competition for organizations to compete for a $50,000 grant. Horlacher proudly states, “against all odds, Shoes 4 the Shoeless won, beating out large corporations from all across the country.” This funding was the traction needed to launch the organization.
Many of the children served by S4TS have never owned a pair of new shoes. Instead they wear hand-me-downs that are extremely worn, and not even close to the right size. Children go to school wearing shoes full of holes, missing soles, taped together, etc. Hundreds of local children do not even own socks. S4TS corrects these painful and embarrassing problems for children on the spot.
Since 2011, Shoes 4 the Shoeless has served over 75,000 children in 7 counties. Around 500 volunteers go to schools each month and work one-on-one with kids to find the right pair of shoes. Around 1,000 pairs of gym shoes are donated by Shoes 4 the Shoeless each month! To learn more and help support Shoes 4 the Shoeless, please visit www.shoes4theshoeless.org
The Dragons Community All-Stars Program is made possible by the generous support of Vectren. For more information or to nominate an All-Star in your life, visit www.daytondragons.com/communityallstar.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.