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The Y and STEP Partner to Provide Shoes for Those in Need Globally

Volusia and Flagler County Family YMCAs and STEP (Save The Earth Projects), founded by 11-year-old Olivia, seek donations of new or gently worn shoes this Christmas

www.facebook.com/SaveTheEarthProjects "Leave a GOOD Footprint!"
PRLog - Dec. 19, 2012 - DELTONA, Fla. -- [Volusia County—December 19, 2012] When her family’s house and possessions were destroyed in a flood, Olivia Russo-Hood found her second home at the Four Townes Family YMCA in Deltona. In spite of the challenges her family faced, 11-year-old Olivia learned about social responsibility from family, friends and the Y, and she began thinking big about giving back. She founded STEP—Save the Earth Projects—to bring people together to organize social change.

STEP’s Christmas project is a shoe drive at the YMCA, in partnership with ShoeBox Recycling, a for-profit, socially-conscious group. “When I learned about how many wearable shoes end up in landfills each year while people everywhere are in need, we STEP-ped up!” says Olivia, founder of STEP.

“There are so many ways this project has an impact—the shoes are distributed to entrepreneurs in developing countries to help fight foot-borne illness; waste is reduced—and our planet made healthier—because of reuse; and our own local community benefits, because $.50 for each pair of shoes is donated back to the YMCA for scholarships and programs!” explains Olivia.

When most kids are playing or sitting in front of the television, Olivia is giving presentations and engaging people to join her efforts. When the YMCA learned of Olivia’s passion for helping people and the planet, they agreed to host the project in all six of their family centers for the Christmas season.

“The Y prides itself on the pillars of youth development, social responsibility, and healthy living. It’s the time of year when we think most about meeting the needs of others—about social responsibility,” says Teresa Rogers, President and CEO of the Volusia Flagler Family YMCA. “We have amazing kids, like Olivia, in our programs. We’re helping build their confidence, and we’re teaching them that they can make a difference—no matter what their circumstances may be or how old they are. We’re excited to partner with Olivia and STEP on this initiative.”

From December 10th through December 23rd, the YMCA will have collections bins in ALL its family centers for members, program participants, and the community to drop off new or gently worn shoes. Please check www.vfymca.org or call your nearest family center for hours of operation.

Shoe donors are encouraged to leave a personal note inside each pair they give. The note will allow them to get in touch with the shoe recipient! Shoe donors are also encouraged to leave their contact information with the YMCA member services representative, so that Olivia and the Y can properly thank those who participate.

All gently-worn adult and child shoes are gratefully accepted (except winter boots). Please visit or call your closest family center for more information:

Ormond Beach Family YMCA

500 Sterthaus Drive
Ormond Beach, FL 32174

DeLand Family YMCA

761 E. US 92

Deland, FL 32724

Port Orange Family YMCA

4701 City Center Pkwy
Port Orange, FL 32129

Four Townes Family YMCA

280 Wolf Pack Run

Deltona, FL 32725


Southeast Volusia Family YMCA

148 West Turgot Ave.
Edgewater, FL 32132



Save the Earth Projects (S.T.E.P.) is a youth social entrepreneurship idea organizing social change. S.T.E.P. participants recognize social problems and then organize, create, and/or manage a social venture to make change. Corporate businesses typically focus on profit and return, whereas social enterprises also measure the returns to society. Currently, Olivia is partnering with peers across the nation in partnership with Shoe Box Recycling as an effort to raise awareness about this global issue, while also helping to raise funds for local charities. Neither she nor any of the S.T.E.P. kids joining her are making or earning any money from this project. Take a stand by taking a S.T.E.P.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SaveTheEarthProjects

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/STEPandTAL
Web:  www.SaveTheEarthProjects.com    About the Y
The Y’s mission is to put Christian principles into practice through programs that build healthy spirit, mind and body for all. As a cause-driven organization, the Y is one of the nation’s leading nonprofits strengthening communities through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility.  Regardless of one’s ability, age, background, culture, faith and/or income, the Y nurtures the potential of children and teens, improves the nation’s health and well-being and provides opportunities to give back and support neighbors. The Y has the long-standing relationships and physical presence not just to promise, but to deliver, lasting personal and social change. Visit www.vfymca.org or call 386-738-9622 for more information.

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Source:YMCA - Volusia and Flagler Counties
Phone:386-738-9622 x 303
Location:Deltona - Florida - United States
Industry:Family, Health
Tags:christmas, donation, Health, shoe, child
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