The South Shore Convention and Visitors Authority, in conjunction with Indiana Sports Corporation, is sponsoring an athletic shoe drive. Athletic shoes will be collected at several local high schools through Nov. 30, and will be distributed through Indiana Sports Corporation's "Geared For Health" Exchange Program.

According to Rick Flutka, sports development manager for the South Shore CVA, schools will be provided collections boxes, donated by Ferree Movers and Storage of Crown Point, allowing students and the public to donate previously worn athletic shoes and cleats. Participating schools include Andrean High School, Griffith High School, Highland High School, Hobart High School, Kankakee Valley High School, Lowell Senior High School, Munster High School and Wheeler High School.

"The goal of this collection is to have students and the public donate used athletic shoes that would have ultimately been discarded or stored and never worn again," explained Flutka. "The collected shoes will be distributed through the Exchange Program sponsored by Indiana Sports Corporation's ‘Geared For Health' initiative."

Indiana Sports Corporation's "Geared For Health" program collects new and gently used donated sports equipment from manufacturers, retailers, institutions, events and individuals. Collected items are distributed to nonprofit youth organizations, sports leagues and sports clubs throughout Indiana. The program focuses on making sports more accessible to underserved children and encouraging commitment to a healthy lifestyle.

The Exchange Program is built to connect under-resourced, youth-serving organizations with supporting companies and individuals. Local organizations may register for the Exchange Program by visiting www.exchange.indianasportscorp.org. Once approved for the program, organizations can search for needed items. Organizations that request shoes from the South Shore Convention and Visitors Authority through the Exchange Program will be able to collect the shoes between Dec. 5 and Dec. 30.

For more information on Indiana Sports Corporation and the Exchange Program, contact Indiana Sports Corporation by emailing exchange@indianasportscorp.org. For more information on the athletic shoe collections, contact Rick Flutka by calling 219-989-7770 or emailing rickcf@southshorecva.com.