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Middle Township Elementary #1 students are “toe-tally” happy with new shoes

Feb 13, 2024

Senior Center’s “Sneakers 4 Smiles” drive receives more than 200 pairs for children in need 

Vice Chair of the Middle Township Senior Center Advisory Board Minnie Callendar and Director Marilyn Miller standing with shoe donations in library at Middle Township Elementary #1.

(From left) Vice Chair of the Middle Township Senior Center Advisory Board Minnie Callendar and Director Marilyn Miller present more than 200 pairs of sneakers to students at Middle Township Elementary #1.

Cape May Court House, NJ – Middle Township Elementary #1 students have happy feet and faces thanks to the kindness and generosity of the those at the Middle Township Senior Center. 

When the school’s guidance counselor, Kelly Cox, approached Marilyn Miller, Director of the Senior Center Advisory Board, about her concerns of students not having appropriate footwear, especially on gym days, Miller quickly initiated the “Sneakers 4 Smiles” drive.  

More than 200 pairs of sneakers were donated to the drive, which began in October. The shoes were recently given to students in Pre-K through second grade who needed them for a variety of reasons, including their current pair being too small or torn, or not owning a pair.  

“Once the word got out to Marilyn Miller’s sensational seniors, their families and friends, the response was overwhelming,” said Cox. “It is important to collaborate with organizations such as The Senior Center to form strong community ties. This relationship bridges the generational gap between our youngest population to the elderly, which supports mental well-being. We are so fortunate to have so many organizations in our communities that are willing to support our students.” 

“The sneakers will help these young learners put their best foot forward,” said Middle Township School District (MTSD) Superintendent Dr. David Salvo. “We’re grateful for these partnerships and for the community members and organizations who are always ready and willing to help the success of our students.” 

This was the first “Sneakers 4 Smiles” drive, and the MTSD administration are thrilled with its success. Previously, the school participated in a Pen Pal program with local senior citizens, and Project Kind Soles with the Upper Township Rotary Club. 

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