When hurricane Harvey first hit the Houston area I was just getting back into town. I actually got stuck in the airport hotel for a few days, because streets were not safe to pass. one of the images that has really stayed with me was when I saw a young lady walking around the airport without shoes on her feet. I could only imagine that her family had fled their area after realizing that flooding was an immediate threat to them. They likely left in a hurry, carrying very little if any possessions. I wanted to help.
Shoes are my thing. I model footwear professionally for some big brands. I also call my motivational movement Follow My Feet, hoping to encourage people to create their own path and keep moving forward. So that image in my mind of the young lady in the airport kind of became a mission for me. I put together a shoe drive, to help people in need here in Houston and in my hometown called Baytown which is east of Houston and right on Galveston Bay. Thankfully, my friends at Keds were generous enough to join me in this. Keds donated boxes full of Women’s and Kids shoes to my shoe drive effort! It wasn’t easy to organize it all, and there were some bumps along the way especially considering several business and non-profits in the area were reeling while trying to deal with all the clean-up, relief, volunteering and donations going on after Hurricane Harvey.
Getting it all sorted out, and getting the shoes to those in need was important to me. I’m glad to say that mission has been accomplished. In Baytown, shoes went to an organization called Communities In Schools, as well as to some students at Lee College. In Houston, shoes were donated to the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Houston. I want to thank every person who dropped of a pair of shoes at one of our partner locations, who mailed in a pair, who helped share the info about my shoe drive or supported it in any other way, and especially the nice folks at Keds.
I sincerely hope to lead more giving back initiatives like this in the near future.