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November 29 – Alexandria, VA

Kids Helping Kids – A Pizza Sale Raises Funds for Sneakers

Davis Bauer, a high school senior, and his mom, Julie, recount their experience giving shoes to all of the students of Bucknell Elementary in Virginia. 

When did you first learn about Shoes That Fit?

Davis: I was young, probably in middle school. For my birthday party, I asked guests to give to a charity of their choice and then share the name with me. My friend Sean donated to Shoes That Fit and shared a thank you note from a child who was given new shoes. I really loved it, and we began donating as a family.

Julie: It was interesting that the kids and their families got so into picking their charity. Giving shoes really resonates with kids because they remember how important feeling good in your shoes is. 

Can you tell me a bit more about how you raised the funds to help an entire  school?

Davis: A pizza sale was the first idea I had for a fundraiser – every now and then they do it at my school – $7 for a slice of pizza, a drink, and some cookies. Everyone enjoys pizza already (and I would get some too) so it would work well. I talked to my friends and they thought it was a great idea. I recruited some friends to help post the flyers, set up, and serve the pizza.

What was it like delivering the shoes?

Davis: It was a lot more moving than I thought it would be. The shoe delivery was first thing in the morning, just after the students’ “morning meeting.” It gave me flashbacks to my time in elementary school. When the principal announced they’d all be getting new shoes, the kids started screaming. We forget how much value shoes hold in a child’s eyes. It made me remember how much I appreciated shoes at that age.

Julie: We are so glad we got to be there and talk to the kids. When they got their shoeboxes, they started a drumroll on them. The principal was high energy, and the kids responded so well to her. We loved meeting her, too. It was also exciting for the faculty members and school district staff as well. We were happy to be building awareness about the need for shoes and how Shoes That Fit can help. It was great to have the kids see that their community cares about them. 

new shoes in Alexandria

Any reactions from the kids that stuck in your mind?

Davis: One student started throwing the shoes in the air out of excitement. Others reacted with high-pitched squeals.

Julie: One boy opened his new shoebox with camo shoes inside, and loved them. He put them on immediately and yelled, “I’m leaving these on!”

As they filed out, one little boy was showing off his shoebox to everyone. All the kids shouted “Thank you!”

What are your hopes for these students?

Davis: I’m hoping these kids wear-out their new shoes, and get the most out of them on the playground and at P.E. 

Julie: I hope all the kids felt cared for by the community, that they felt special that day and whenever they wear their new shoes. I hope their families don’t have to sacrifice other things now to afford shoes. We’ve seen the impact of giving shoes on paper, but to be able to actually witness it was a great opportunity.

Julie is now a member of Shoes That Fit’s advisory board, helping to provide guidance, connections, and insight to further our mission.

Thank you, Davis and Julie, for all you are doing for the kids!

Are you inspired by this story? Want to get your child involved in giving? Reach out at [email protected] or call 909-482-0050.

the Bauers, Natalie from Shoes That Fit, and the school staff