Hamilton High student to provide new shoes for entire elementary school
It’s a special feeling for Hamilton High School junior Sam Bregman when he puts on a new pair of shoes.
“I get this extreme sense of pride, joy and happiness,” Bregman said in a Zoom interview. “You feel like you almost have superpowers, you can run faster, jump higher.”
Knowing first-hand the type of impact a new pair of shoes provide, Bregman wanted to share this experience with those who are less fortunate.
The Chandler resident has raised over $13,500 partnering with nonprofit organization “Shoes That Fit” in order to provide every student at Galveston Elementary School with new shoes and socks, totaling 455 shoes and 2,275 pairs of socks.
“Many families in the area are currently in lower socioeconomic situations,” Bregman said.
He lives close to Galveston Elementary School in Chandler and ran a soccer clinic there, seeing first-hand the students’ needs for new shoes, especially since most kids walk to school.
“Many students that ‘Shoes That Fit’ has helped in the past, the soles are coming off and they have to hold them together with rubber bands or duct tape,” he said. “I did not want any kid suffering like that.”
Bregman isn’t just stopping at donating new shoes; he and “Shoes That Fit” are making sure that each pair fits each student perfectly with measurements.
“Instead of just getting a whole bunch of brand new sneakers and giving them to the school and saying ‘Here you go, hope these work,’ every single student will get a pair of shoes just as if they went to the store and picked them up themselves,” Bregman said.
Donating shoes to Galveston Elementary School students continues Bregman’s goal of combining his love of shoes with helping the community, a passion that started as a freshman.
Bregman donated his first pair of shoes in a program where he “adopted” a classmate’s family for the holidays.
The fellow student wanted a new pair of shoes so Bregman spent all day looking around the mall until he found the perfect pair – Nike React 87’s that featured comfort, a stylish design and durability.
While the gift was to someone anonymous, he’s pretty sure he saw those same pair of Nike React 87’s on the student around the school.
“I think he wore them multiple times and I would always see a smile on his face,” Bregman said. “That brought me so much excitement and happiness that I thought, why not do this on a larger scale?”
Suffice to say he’s accomplished that goal as he will be able to witness the same positive impact having new shoes made on that high school student on a much larger scale when the shoes are delivered to the elementary school kids early next year.
“I have a pretty good feeling I’m going to start tearing up because I’ve put so much into this project,” Bregman said, adding he’s had a tough year. “This project has been an amazing thing for me to keep working toward and put my energy into just knowing that helping others and being able to improve my community is something I’m really passionate about.
“Every time I think of this or see the kids at school, I’m just going to be filled with so much happiness and joy knowing that together myself and the community members were able to change these kids’ lives.”