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One Sole Purpose: Students at 7 Schools Getting New Shoes

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- What if you knew what your soul purpose was in life? One Springfield couple has their answer.
It is a big deal. It's so cool. You watch throughout the year and they are wearing their Converse.
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- What if you knew what your soul purpose was in life? One Springfield couple has their answer.

Through fundraising and hard work, this is the fourth year they have given thousands of school children a new pair of Chuck Taylor Converse All Stars.

On Monday, Weller Elementary was the first of several schools receiving this fall giveaway, called "One Sole Purpose."

By the end of this week, they will have given away more than 10,000 pairs. But, more importantly, they work to provide hope and dignity.

"They are pretty and they are special to me," says Skylee, a student. She was excited to pick her color, "because I like pink.

Peyton, well, he's just excited.

"They cool," he says. "I can run fast in these."

Five-year-old Abby thought hers were the best.

"I get red. Because they are fun to wear. I felt happy."

Gayla Wells and her husband volunteered at Weller where 90 percent of the students qualify for free and reduced lunch.

"We would see students come to school with their shoes duct-taped or torn," she says. "Before, we volunteered here at Weller. I really had my head buried in the sand. I just was so unaware. Just very unaware of the need within our own community."

Weller Principal Marilyn Monroe has been at this Title I school for 11 years.

"Lots of families struggling to make ends meet, so having new shoes is huge," she says. "Some of them come with hardly any soles on their shoes or they've outgrown their shoes, so it is a big deal. It's so cool. You watch throughout the year and they are wearing their Converse."

Wells says now she spends more time running around to make sure there are enough shoes to go around and she misses working with the kids one on one.

One Sole Purpose partners with churches, businesses and individuals to provide new shoes to every child in SPS Title I elementary schools through the adoption of a single child, a classroom, a grade level or entire school for the fall shoe delivery day.

Schedule of shoe delivery
Fremont Elementary - Monday, Sept. 16
Weller Elementary - Monday, Sept. 16
Westport Elementary - Tuesday, Sept. 17
York Elementary - Tuesday, Sept. 17
Williams Elementary - Wednesday, Sept. 18
Bissett Elementary - Wednesday, Sept. 18
Bowerman Elementary - Wednesday, Sept. 18
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