Kicks4Kids spends $500,000 in sneaker donations

Table at Pusch Ridge Christian Academy. (Andy Morales/AllSportsTucson)

VENMO = Kicks4KidsTucson

Kicks4Kids started as a project to provide about 500 tennis shoes to my own Rio Vista Elementary students several years ago, but has grown into a program that has now spanned six school districts with over 20,125 pairs. (over $503,100) collected and distributed to low-income students and programs in need so far. It is the most successful program of its kind.

The program is simple. High school or club sports teams collect one pair of new tennis shoes (youth sizes 12-6) per athlete and the shoes will be delivered to a low-income school in that school’s supply model or to another school in need. If larger sizes are collected, we will find a middle school or high school in need, but that is not our primary focus. Last spring, I continued to trade team photos for sneakers.

The Pusch Ridge baseball team collected more than 60 pairs of sneakers in April, and the Ironwood Ridge boys’ and girls’ tennis teams also collected tennis shoes. The Tucson High, Canyon del Oro and Mountain View baseball teams collected sneakers in March, making it one of the most successful collections to date.

Previously, the girls’ football programs at Ironwood Ridge and Tucson High collected tennis shoes in Troy Iturralde’s honor.

Individuals and groups can also contribute, such as the National Elementary Honor Society and the Student Council of Painted Sky Elementary. Painted Sky’s program collects sneakers for their public service needs and the amount often reaches around $3,000. Additionally, businesses can get involved. For example, Frog and Firkin collect sneaker donations for Kicks4Kids at Christmas. Several families also dropped off shoes at my house.

Additionally, all proceeds from high school team photos and senior photos go to this program. So. If you had me do your senior photos, there are little kids running around in your sneakers. The Scott family made a significant financial contribution this spring. The shoe bank is located at Rio Vista Elementary.

MORE ABOUT THE PROGRAM HERE

Schools participating in the Kicks4Kids program (so far)
Elemental Acacia (Vail)
Amphitheater High School (Amphi)
Amphi Head Start
Arizona School for the Deaf and Blind (ASDB)
Blenman Elementary School (TUSD)
Booth-Fickett Elementary School (TUSD)
Borton Elementary School (TUSD)
Butterfield Primary School (Marana)
Calabasas (Rio Rico)
Carillo K-5 (TUSD)
Casa de los Ninos (Program)
Catalina High School (TUSD)
Elemental Cavett (TUSD)
Centennial Elementary (Flowing Wells)
CE Elemental Pink (TUSD)
Challenger (Sunnyside)
Coronado K-8 (Amphi)
Coronado Head Start
Coyote Trail (Marana)
Cragin Elementary (TUSD)
Davidson (TUSD)
Davis Elemental (TUSD)
DeGrazia (Marana)
Desert Willow (Vail)
Donaldson Elementary School (Amphi)
Doolen College (TUSD)
Drexel (Sunnyside)
Elvira Elementary School (Sunnyside)
Erickson Elementary (TUSD)
Flowing Wells High School (Flowing Wells)
Fort Apache Reserve
Gallego Primary (Sunnyside)
Grijalva Elementary School (TUSD)
Hendricks Elementary (Flowing Wells)
Holaway Elementary (Amphi)
Holladay Elementary (TUSD)
Hollinger K-8 (TUSD)
Homer Davis Elementary School (Flowing Wells)
Hudlow Elementary (TUSD)
Imagine Amphi Preschool (Amphi)
Ironwood (Marana)
Keeling Elementary School (Amphi)
Head Start Keel
Laguna Elementary (Flowing Wells)
Elemental Freedom (Sunnyside)
Elemental Lineweaver (TUSD)
Los Amigos (Sunnyside)
Los Ninos (Sunnyside)
Lynn/Urquides Elementary (TUSD)
Elemental Manzo (TUSD)
Marshall Elementary (TUSD)
Elemental Maxwell (TUSD)
Mexican Academy of Tucson (TUSD)
Elementary miles (TUSD)
Mission Manor Elementary School (Sunnyside)
Mission View Elementary (TUSD)
Nash Elementary School (Amphi)
Elemental Ochoa (TUSD)
Ocotillo (Sunnyside)
Oyama Elementary School (TUSD)
Pistor Middle School (TUSD)
Primary Prince (Amphi)
Prince Head Start
Pueblo Gardens (TUSD)
Quail Race (Marana)
Rattlesnake Crest (Marana)
Richardson Elementary School (Flowing Wells)
Rio Vista Elementary School (Amphi)
Rivera (Sunnyside)
Roadrunner (Marana)
Roberts/Naylor K-8 (TUSD)
Roskruge K-8 (TUSD)
Santa Clara Elementary School (Sunnyside)
Elemental Sewell (TUSD)
Sierra (Sunnyside)
View from the top (Sunnyside)
Sunnyside High School
Tolson Elementary (TUSD)
Tortolita (Marana)
Twin Peaks (Marana)
Walker Elementary (Amphi)
Walter Douglas Elementary School (Flowing Wells)
Elemental White (TUSD)
Elementary Whitmore (TUSD)
Wright Elementary (TUSD)

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Named one of “Arizona’s Heart & Sol” by KOLD and Casino del Sol, Andy Morales was recognized by the AIA as Top High School Reporter in 2014, he received the Ray McNally Award in 2017 and AZ Education Recognition News in 2019. He coached youth, high school and college for over 30 years. He was the first in Arizona to write about high school beach volleyball and high school girl wrestling and his unique perspective can only be found here and on AZPreps365.com. Andy is a Southern Arizona voting member of the Ed Doherty Award, recognizing Arizona’s top football player, and he was named local hero by the Tucson Weekly for 2016. Andy was named an Honorary Flowing Wells Caballero in 2019, became a member of the Sunnyside Los Mezquites Cross Country Hall of Fame in 2021, and he was a member of the Amphi COVID-19 Blue Ribbon Committee. He received a Distinguished Service Award from the Amphitheater and he was recognized by Councilman Richard Fimbres. Contact Andy Morales at [email protected]

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