Aramark, UAPB distribute 500 pairs of shoes to Jefferson County youth

Volunteers Work in Partnership with Samaritan’s Feet

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UAPB student-athlete Joshua Wallace prepares to put shoes on the feet of a local Pine Bluff student. Employee/university volunteers were placed at feet washing stations where they helped children wash their feet and fit them in their new shoes.

Aramark employees and the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (UAPB) hosted a Samaritan’s Feet event recently in observance of the National Day of Service. The volunteers, who were a mix of Aramark employees, UAPB students and student-athletes, and Pine Bluff community members distributed 500 pairs of new athletic shoes to pre-registered local children that attend the district’s schools. The volunteers actively engaged the children as they helped wash the recipients’ feet and fit them in their new shoes and socks while conveying a message of hope and caring.

Leading up to this event, Aramark donated $10,000 (cost of the shoes) to Samaritan’s Feet, a non-profit organization which collects and distributes shoes for people in need within targeted areas throughout the U.S. and internationally. Though Aramark as a company has been involved with Samaritan’s Feet through Aramark’s “Shoes of Hope” events in the past, this will be the first year Aramark has partnered with UAPB to host the event.

About the National Day of Service Program Objective

Each year, the Corporation for National and Community Service honors Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy by asking Americans to make the Martin Luther King Holiday a National Day of Service. The King family has chosen to partner with Samaritan’s Feet in a very unique way to demonstrate the servant leadership that he stood for.

In days surrounding the Martin Luther King Holiday, Samaritan’s Feet hosts shoe distributions in cities across the United States, impacting thousands of underprivileged people in honor of the Martin Luther King Jr. National Day of Service. Objectives of the National Day of Service program include: providing new athletic shoes and socks for needy individuals; partnering with local schools, corporations, non-profits, and organizations, utilizing the power of collaboration to transform communities through service; and encouraging both students and volunteers with the life-changing message of hope and respect for all people.

Samaritan’s Feet is a 501(c)(3) humanitarian aid organization that shares a message of hope and love through washing the feet of impoverished children around the world and fitting them with new shoes. There are an estimated 2.2 billion people worldwide living in poverty and more than 1.5 billion who suffer from foot borne diseases. Since its founding by Manny Ohonme in 2003, Samaritan’s Feet and its team of ambassadors and partners have given shoes to more than 6.5 million children in more than 75 nations. For more information about Samaritan’s Feet International, visit www.SamaritansFeet.org .

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