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Community asked to join Sheriff’s Office in support of shoe drive on behalf of children



RENO, Nev. — The Washoe County Sheriff’s Office is asking the community to join with them in a local effort to change children “from the feet up” by collecting 100,000 pairs of shoes by April 15.

The Sheriff’s Office is partnering with the non-profit organization Think Kindness in this effort to collect gently used children and adult shoes that will be given to local Title I schools, local non-profits and the remainder to Soles4Souls, a non-profit that delivers shoes to third world countries.

Think Kindness is a non-profit organization that inspires youth to incorporate acts of kindness, not violence, in their daily lives. Founder Brian Williams is a former martial arts instructor who now facilitates one of the most comprehensive character development programs in the country. His philosophy is that “kindness is the ultimate form of self-defense.”

“Working together we can ensure that these children are equipped with the proper foot gear, and proper mind set to grow into valuable members of our community” Sheriff Haley said. “Our goal is to bring the community together in one large act of kindness that will send a clear message to these children about value of caring for each other. A message we believe will encourage positive behavior.”

“By being the participating law enforcement agency, we are emulating the principle that kindness makes a difference. By the simple act of donating shoes, we model the behavior,” Haley said.  Williams noted that if our community reaches the 100,000 shoe goal, it will be considered the largest community shoe drive in the country.

Collection bins have been placed at the Sheriff’s Office at 911 Parr Blvd. and there are a number of other drop-off locations throughout Washoe County. For information, contact Think Kindness at (775) 636-8026 or visit www.thinkkindness.org.

Williams challenges the entire student body and staff of the elementary schools he works with to journal and document Random Acts of Kindness. According to Williams, participating schools have witnessed a significant reduction in aggressive or violent behaviors in just weeks.

Williams cites Alyce Taylor Elementary as one of his top schools and says they have documented over 15,000 random acts of kindness in just a few weeks.

The Washoe County Sheriff’s Office celebrates 150 years of proud service and community partnership in 2011. Sheriff Michael Haley is the 24th person elected to serve as the Sheriff of Washoe County. His office continues to be the only full service public safety agency operating within northern Nevada and is responsible for operating the consolidated detention facility, regional crime lab, Northern Nevada Counter Terrorism Center, Internet Crimes against Children Task Force, court security, service of civil process and traditional street patrols. For more information, visit www.washoesheriff.com.

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