Community & Culture

Walking in a Foster Child's Shoes

I love shopping for new shoes. As a California girl, I especially love flip flops but I don't discriminate on other shoes like sandals, tennis shoes or heels. There's something about a great pair of shoes that make you feel your best. I know that I'm not alone in this, which I learned through our Mattress Firm Foster Kids Shoe Drive.

Mattress Firm Foster Kids Shoe Drive

Mattress Firm Foster Kids host year-round collection drives for essentials like new clothing, shoes, school supplies and toys during the holidays. Donations are collected through the Ticket to Dream Foundation, a 501(c)3 organization, and after each of the six annual donation drives, proceeds stay in the community where donated and are distributed to carefully chosen local nonprofit foster care partners. It's incredible to see the generosity from our communities who stand behind our mission that not everyone can be a foster parent, but anyone can help a foster child.

Donating to our Shoe Drive gives children in foster care an opportunity to join the basketball team, have a pep in their step for back to school and fit in with their peers. For children who have lost their family and been separated from their siblings, something little, like a pair of shoes, can make a big difference.

Your Shoe Donation Truly Makes A Difference

One of the best parts of our day on the Community Relations team is going through our mail. Heartfelt letters from foster care agencies show us the difference we're truly making in the lives of children in foster care. We also love letters and cards from foster youth who received support through our collection drives. Many of their cards are filled with colorful drawings and simple but impactful messages.

One day as I opened the thank you cards we had received, I was expecting to enjoy hand written notes and drawings from foster children. What I wasn't expecting is to stop in my tracks by what a few of them said. "I feel like a superhero in my new shoes." "I can run and keep up with my friends now."

These notes are a welcomed reminder why the work we do through Mattress Firm Foster Kids is so important. There are 400,000 foster children nationwide who need our help. They're removed from their homes with sometimes just the clothes off their backs and the shoes on their feet. The new homes they're placed in do their best to help replace items they've out grown but the reality is children outgrow items quickly and support for foster parents is not enough. Grandparents and extended family that open their homes also need help filling the gaps to provide the necessities.

Donating to the Mattress Firm Foster Kids Shoe Drive is Simple

Many of us will never understand what it's like to walk in their shoes, but there are ways to help make their path in life a little smoother. Donating a pair of shoes can mean they have the chance to run faster, jump higher and show off their personal style. Bring your donation of new shoes in any size - from toddler to teen - to a Mattress Firm today through Oct. 30, and they'll be matched with a foster child in need in your area through one of our local nonprofit partners.

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