ALMA, Ark (KNWA) — What started out as a Payless shoe donation has evolved into a huge community event called “KickStart 2019” and was kick-started by an Alma family’s generosity.
In late July Carrie Jernigan, from Alma and a mom of three children, was visiting an area Payless shoe store that was closing. While there, her daughter Harper asked about buying an extra pair of shoes for a child in need who attended her school. Carrie was willing to do so and took it a step further — buying every pair of shoes with the intention of giving them away to additional children in need.
Carrie bought the 1,500 pairs of remaining shoes, and while not saying how much she spent she did say she was pleased with the $21,000 in savings from the purchase.
It’s this purchase that caused a donating frenzy. Carrie and family have traveled nationally for network television appearances. One network donated $30,000 to the “back-to-school” event.
Here is a partial list of donations:
- More than 2,000 pairs of shoes
- 2,500 pairs of socks
- 1,000 pairs of underwear
- 900 backpacks
- $30,000 in school supplies
- Kindergarten and athletic physicals
- Two dentists, five hygienists doing exams and giving toothbrushes/toothpaste
- Eye exams
- Eight hairstylists doing haircuts
- Free books
- Food vouchers from Sonic, McDonald’s, Chick-fil-A, Taco Bell