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Entire elementary school gets new shoes and a surprise visit from the Seattle Storm

KING-TV Seattle logo KING-TV Seattle 9/15/2021 Chris Cashman
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Students at Seattle’s Bailey Gatzert Elementary School have a little pep in their step today, thanks to a visit from Seattle Storm members and a team of community partners who delivered brand new shoes to the entire student body. 

Nordstrom and a nonprofit organization called “Shoes That Fit” rolled on to campus with a school bus packed with new Nike shoes. 

The Seattle Storm showed up with mascot Doppler and point guard Jordin Canada to help the kids find the perfect fitting sneaker. 

“As a kid, it’s always about the little things. It’s not doing something so big…it’s just something as simple as giving shoes to kids that means everything to them and something that they will always remember,” Canada said. The two-time WNBA champion is also a Jordan Brand athlete and brought boxes of her own select sneakers to surprise the kids.

Shoes are often one of the most expensive items that families need to purchase for school and that’s especially true for one of Seattle’s most diverse schools, with one of the most economically disadvantaged populations in Seattle. 

Some students are even facing homelessness or in transitional housing. More than 20 languages are spoken by students’ families. But today's event featured the universal language of giving. 

Ronnie Bell, the Principal at Bailey Gatzert, said, "New shoes, new attitude. And we want kids to feel comfortable and confident as we welcome them back to school.” 

This is something Shoes That Fit echoes with their partnership with Nordstrom. Shoes That Fit doesn’t receive any government funding and has given out over 200,000 pairs of shoes in the 11 years working with Nordstrom.

Nekeda Newell-Hall is the Chief Strategy Officer with Shoes That Fit and said, “It’s about the kids. It’s not about the shoes at all. The shoes are a means to express how much we love the children, how much we are investing in them and how much we really want to have this basic need met so that they can learn, play and thrive.”

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