The South Shore community will have the opportunity to provide children of all the ages the athletic shoes needed to participate in sports.

During the National Softball Association Girls Fast Pitch "B' World Series skills competition, hosted at the Crown Point Sports Complex on Monday, July 21, South Shore Sports Promotions will be accepting athletic shoe donations that will be given to Oklahoma Cleats for Kids, a nonprofit organization that collects and distributes sports shoes, clothes and equipment to kids in need.

Softball players from throughout the Midwest will be asked to bring a pair of athletic shoes to donate, and the public is encouraged to also participate in the shoe drive. Shoe donations can be dropped off at the sports complex between 11:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.

"Prior to starting with the South Shore Convention and Visitors Authority, I had served as an athletic director and was always challenged on what to do with leftover athletic equipment," said Rick Flutka, sports development manager for the South Shore CVA. "After hearing a presentation by Oklahoma Cleats for Kids during a symposium in March, it struck a chord and I thought ‘now somebody less fortunate could have these items for their use.'"

According to Stacy McDaniel, president and founder of Oklahoma Cleats for Kids, donated items are distributed to families, coaches and organizations that have kids that are in need.

"Thousands of kids have benefitted (from Oklahoma Cleats for Kids)," said McDaniel. "It's really all about what happens after the kids get the shoes, empowering kids, the life lessons taught through sports. Sports give them something to care about."

McDaniel also explained that another major part of Oklahoma Cleats for Kids is giving kids the opportunity to give back.

"One of the most fantastic things about our organization is that recipients also give back with volunteer time or their own sporting good items," said McDaniel. "It's incredible to see kids helping other kids."

For more information on Oklahoma Cleats for Kids, visit www.okcleatsforkids.org. To learn more about the South Shore Convention and Visitors Authority or South Shore Sports Promotions, visit www.southshorecva.com.