150 Local Children Get Shoes as Part of Barefoot Basketball Promotion

Over 150 local children now have a new pair of Nikes thanks to the efforts of Nevada women's basketball coach Jane Albright.

In January, Albright made a personal donation and encouraged Wolf Pack donors and fans to support Samaritan's Feet, a global non-profit aimed at providing shoes for impoverished children. The donations allowed her to purchase 150 pairs of Nikes for three local organizations with all of the shoes benefiting children in northern Nevada.

In addition to encouraging the donations, Albright and her staff coached barefoot in the Wolf Pack's home game against UNLV in January to raise awareness for the cause.

According to Albright, the organizations said that many of the children had never had a new pair of shoes, wore shoes that didn't fit or didn't have laces or only had inexpensive flip-flops, even in the winter. She received cute thank you cards from the organizations, including a basketball shaped card signed by many of the children.

shoecard.JPGThe accompanying letter from one of the organizations said they were "grateful for the grand gift of Nike shoes provided for the forgotten youth in Reno/Sparks... it (is) a joy to see them with proper footwear. Thank you for providing such a necessary part of their wardrobe. The kids have been flashing their feet to show off their shoes."

Samaritan's Feet is a non-profit organization founded by Emmanuel Ohonme in 2003. Their mission is to equip 10 million impoverished children with 10 million shoes. Since beginning in 2003, Samaritan's Feet has helped more than four million people in 60 countries.

A special thanks to all of the Wolf Pack fans who contributed to the cause this year and helped buy shoes for local children. Albright plans to collect donations to support Samaritan's Feet again next basketball season.


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