WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. -- Dr. Bruce Pinker of Progressive Foot Care in White Plains recently put his best foot forward in an effort to help the homeless.
He invited his patients to donate their lightly used shoes and boots to support a shoe drive for Westchester’s men, women and children in need. The patients responded by donating more than 360 pairs of shoes and boots in all shapes and sizes, many of them new.
The shoes were donated to Lifting Up Westchester (LUW), a local nonprofit social services agency, for distribution to individuals from their Open Arms Men’s Shelter, Samaritan House Women’s Shelter and Soup Kitchen.
This is the ninth year that Pinker has organized the drive.
“We started our Annual Holiday Shoe Drive for the Homeless to help those in need to get back on their feet with a new pair of shoes," Pinker said. "We hope to prevent frostbite, diseases, infections and other serious foot issues by providing them with proper footwear.”
Students from the Pleasantville Laboratory School at Westchester Community College volunteered to sort the shoes. The school provides living skills development programs and vocational education/experience for students with developmental and intellectual disabilities.
Nancy Inzinna, LUW volunteer and community outreach manager, said, “It's heartwarming to see how the young men took so much pride in their work and were so thoughtful about the people who would be receiving the 364 pairs of shoes. They were thrilled that Dr. Pinker came by to say Hi and thank them.”
Shoes are being distributed to individuals in need through Grace’s Kitchen, LUW’s soup kitchen in White Plains. The first distribution occurred on Martin Luther King Day.
Lifting Up Westchester is a 501 (c )(3) organization whose mission is to restore hope to Westchester County’s men, women and children in need by providing them with food, shelter and support- lifting them to greater self-sufficiency with dignity and respect.
It is one of the largest social services agencies in Westchester County and has been fulfilling its mission since 1979 through the operation of eight community-based programs, according to a release from LUW.
For additional information about LUW, visit www.liftingupwestchester.org or contact Chris Schwartz at firstname.lastname@example.org or (914) 949-3098.