The 2019 Shoe Battle of the Schools
event launched Thursday, Feb. 14th
and runs through Thursday, Feb. 28th. "Show some love. Share your soles." is the event theme for a second year in a row launching on Valentine's Day this year and welcoming nine participating high schools in the friendly competition.
High School classes and clubs form teams to collect new and gently-used shoes for local unsheltered youth, students' in-need, and young athletes. Participating schools seek to collect the greatest number of shoes with the winning campus receiving the traveling Shoe Battle trophy from the City of Salem and other prizes.
All sizes and styles of athletic shoes and warm boots are accepted with drop off locations found inside the front lobbies of each high school. Additional collection sites include feeder elementary and middle schools, businesses, churches, and organizations including Kaiser Permanente locations in Salem and Keizer as listed on the One Thousand Soles Facebook page.
In the 2018 Shoe Battle, students again surpassed the 1,000 mark bringing in 4,500 pairs of shoes. With strong partnerships from Catholic parishes, parochial schools, and Salem Academy, Blanchet Catholic High School secured over one thousand pairs of shoes and took home the coveted trophy. This year teens were given a greater challenge set by the City of Salem's Youth Development section. The Shoe Battle is accepting only the shoe types in greatest demand among local kids' in-need including athletic shoes, specialty sports shoes like cleats, and warm boots. The competition's point system also allows for new socks, laces, and cash donations which count towards school collection totals.
Schools collecting shoes include: Abiqua Academy, Blanchet Catholic High School, Early College High School, North Salem High School, McKay High School, McNary High School, South Salem High School, Sprague High School and West Salem High School.
The drive benefits youth in Salem Keizer Public Schools, HOME Youth and Resource Center, Taylor's House, HOST Youth Shelter, COUNTRY Financial Kids Relays, Boys & Girls Club of Salem, Marion and Polk Counties, local sports clubs, and other youth organizations.