Mantua – Prompted by an online call to action from Kid President, who has shared such timeless advice as “open your heart more than your mouth,” and “create something that will make the world awesome,” students at Crestwood Primary School decided to celebrate the month of October by collecting socks for those in need. And they sure collected a lot of socks.
Fueled by the knowledge that every night in the US, an estimated 600,000 people live on the streets, they organized a school-wide effort to collect socks for those in need. Socktober, a national service project created promoted by Youtube sensation Kid President, challenges kids, schools, and businesses to do something good for others, explaining, “If we all make today awesome for somebody else, today will be awesome for everybody.”
Crestwood counselor Nikki Johansen, who learned of the project from music teacher Jennifer Gilles, organized the effort. Each week during the month, Johansen kept a tally of the classroom that collected the most pairs of socks, announcing the winner at the end of each week. The winning class was bestowed the golden sock, a traveling award that the winning class retained for a week.
With the exception of one week, Mrs. Picone’s first grade class held on to the award for the majority of the month, collecting a total of 669 pairs of socks for infants, kids, men, and women. “Some kids went shopping with their families over the weekends, and were excited to share what they selected,” beamed Picone. The entire school collected a total of 1,435 pairs of socks, as well as a large box of matching hats and scarves made by local Girl Scout Troop 80865.
According to Johansen, Family and Community Services in Portage County will distribute these donations through some of the 40 community programs they facilitate, including support for the homeless and battered women’s programs. “This is a hands-on way for students to learn citizenship, giving to those in need,” she explained. “I’ve been so impressed by these kiddos,” gushed Johansen. Due to the success of this year’s Soctober, she plans to continue the program in 2016. To learn more about the program, visit soulpancake.com/socktober/.