ShoesThatFit.org has been working with the LAPD to line up an event where new sneakers were given to everyone at a Watts elementary school.
When I arrived, there was already an energetic buzz in the halls. Walking through the cafeteria where the kids were lined up and waiting in anticipation, I felt the special day.
Principal Geary greeted me and led me into the modest auditorium, with worn floors and perhaps 12 rows of hard-backed foldout seats.
Nekedha had the attention of the dozen volunteers and dozen LAPD, thanking them and describing how the event was to proceed.
After the kids were filed in (as orderly as possible!), they'd sit "legs crossed, applesauce."
It was my gig to talk to a student, any student, ask their name and shoe size, then go and get one of the new, in-box New Balance, FILA or NIKE sneakers from the sorted piles in the front of the short stage.
The first child I met was Gabriela. She seemed so happy to be there and told me she was a girl's size 1. It was easy to find the box, and when I returned she beamed!