FAQ: Project 680 Shoe Drive & Bike Ride
How many students are you aiming to provide shoes for?
Why are new shoes helpful?
New shoes are a felt need among students and will bless needy students in the FCUSD. New shoes will help to give a sense of dignity as well as replace old and worn out ones. That sounds pretty good to us.
How much money are you hoping to collect?
We are aiming to collect $1,500. The average shoe purchase for students at Payless Shoe Source is $20.00. The great thing though is when you buy one pair of shoes at Payless, the second pair is ½ off. Therefore two pairs of shoes would cost $30.00, which would bring 100 pairs of shoes to a total of $1,500. Together we can do it!!!
Why are you using Payless Shoe Source exclusively for the shoe drive?
The District Liaison for Homeless Services has used Payless Shoe Source for a number of consecutive years to promote a shoe drive for kids in need in the FCUSD. Using Payless has a huge advantage because of their “buy 1, get the second pair ½ off”, but they also offer their shoes TAX FREE to the District Liaison for Homeless Services. This is an enormous savings.
What types of donations will you accept?
We will accept checks, cash and Payless Shoe Source gift cards. Checks can be made out to “Folsom Cordova Community Partnership” since they are a partner to the shoe drive and they have non-profit status (we are not a 501c3 and can therefore not offer tax write-offs, but they can).
Will you accept donated shoes?
We will NOT accept donated shoes because students at the shoe drive event (before the end of the year) are given the opportunity to select new shoes that fit their feet perfectly as well as their sense of style. Donated shoes may not fit a student, and that defeats the purpose. We sincerely appreciate people’s generosity, but we cannot accept shoes.
Why are you raising money instead of collecting socks and other items like you have done in the past?
This project is a bit different for us because in the past we have never had to raise money, but only collect items like socks or underwear. Since the District Liaison uses Payless Shoes Source for her yearly shoe drive (with very good reason as mentioned above), and the shoe drive does not have the money it needs this year to provide for needy students, the most relevant thing for us to do was raise money to help underwrite the cost of new shoes. The shoe drive is a yearly event that the Liaison for Homeless Services plans and pulls off. This year funds have not come in like they have in years past, so we wanted to do something about that. Ultimately, if we do not raise money, kids do not get new shoes. It’s that simple.
Are students given a gift card or money directly?
Students will NOT be given money or a gift card. Parents of students will NOT be given any form of money either. The District Liaison will invite the neediest students in the district to come to Payless Shoe Source on a date before the end of the year. The Liaison and her staff will have students pick out shoes that fit and shoes the students LOVE. The Liaison will then pay for the shoes from the donated funds. This system promotes integrity as well as empowers students to get the shoes they really want. Our plan is to simply collect funds and then get 100% of donated funds to the District Liaison before the shoe event takes place.
What are some creative ways to raise a few bucks to donate?
We are encouraging individuals, households, organizations, churches, businesses and groups of friends to find creative ways to get involved. We really believe that we can find solutions to problems by teaming up with others and thinking out of the box. We encourage groups of people to brainstorm together about how to raise money. What if your kids dreamed something up? What if your household sold something on Craigslist and donated the proceeds to the shoe drive? What if you didn’t eat out for lunch a couple of times during the month and then directed your savings toward the shoe drive? What if you did a lemonade sale, garage sale, hot chocolate sale, or sold some sort of artistic craft you made? What if you gave up one item per week in your grocery shopping and instead directed those few dollars to shoes? What if a group of friends decided to find a creative way to raise enough money for 3 shoes ($30 essentially)? What if you asked some people at church or the office to consider getting involved in some way with you?
There are truly so many ways we can raise just a little bit of money, and every bit helps. So many of us are strapped for cash these days, but with a bit of creativity, we can do great things together.
Do I have to donate a certain amount to be involved?
No. We are incredibly grateful for anything people offer. Generosity looks different for all of us, especially in this economy. We are truly thankful for everything that comes in, whether a few dollars or far more. Thank you in advance.
What is the “Project 680 Community Bike Ride”?
We’re so glad you asked. On Saturday, November 7, 2009 we are hosting a community bike ride. We’ll meet at the parking lot in Hagan Park in Rancho Cordova (the free lot just past Cordova High School) and then take a short bike ride together. This ride is for all ages and is very family-friendly. We’ll have some people who ride quite regularly and others who maybe haven’t sat on a bike for 20+ years. We’ll ride for less than 20 minutes to River Bend Park (formerly Goethe Park – next to the bridge), and we’ll eat a sack lunch at the park enjoy some company, and then make our way back to Hagan Park. Please bring a sack lunch.
We plan to have a really fun ride, and we are asking each rider to donate $5.00 to ride or a household can donate $10.00. We are also encouraging riders to consider getting sponsored by family members, friends, co-workers or local businesses. We do not have an official sponsor form, but we say go for it!!!
Please see our website at www.project680.org/projects/bike for details.
Can I put together a “Riding for Shoes” team?
Yes. That would be wonderful. We’d love to see groups of friends, co-workers, churches, organizations, and businesses come as a group to ride. You are certainly welcome to wear a similar t-shirt or some sort of a display of who you are (or not – your choice). We say have fun with this and be creative.
I don’t ride bikes. Can I still be involved?
Yes. We realize that the Community Bike Ride will not attract everyone. We welcome others to make a donation and/or think up a creative way to get involved. We will need some people to handle some logistical items on the day of the ride too, so if that interests you, please contact us.
Can I invite friends or co-workers to the Project 680 Community Bike Ride?
Yes. Please do so. The more people we have, the more fun we will have. We are encouraging individuals, households, organizations, churches, businesses and groups of friends
Won’t it be too cold in November for a bike ride?
Maybe, but if it is, then bring a jacket. Spring would be more ideal, but we’re looking forward to this ride and we envision something really great, even if it is cold. Rain or shine, we’ll be riding. For the record though, we are hoping and planning for “shine”.
Can I just donate shoes instead of a check, cash or Payless gift card?
We are only accepting checks, cash and Payless Shoe Source gift cards because the students invited to the shoe event (before the year is over) will select shoes according to their exact size and preference / style.
Can I donate other stuff?
Our focus is only shoes right now because the annual shoe drive that the District Liaison does is not funded as it needs to be. We think local students in need deserve to have new shoes, so it makes sense for us to embark on this project. If you are really not interested in shoes, call us to see if any other opportunities are available. We may have a need for some groups or individuals to supply certain sizes of underwear, socks and other supplies.
Who is behind this effort?
People like you. Also, various neighborhood leaders throughout Rancho Cordova and Folsom, local organizations, churches, and businesses. This project is being spearheaded by the Project 680 team, which is comprised of an array of folks from the community in Rancho Cordova as well as local organizations. This effort belongs to all of us. Thank you everyone who is stepping up to make this project successful.
Project 680 has a financial accountability board in place, which consists of Ryan Lundquist, Bonnie Penrose, and George Burnash. We will be above reproach in our handling of donations of any kind, whether financial or physical. Operating with complete integrity and doing the things we say we are going to do is supremely important to us. We keep a detailed ledger of all received donations, and we have a system of checks and balances in place to ensure all donations are accounted for and get to the District Liaison.
Do I have to be a resident in Rancho Cordova or Folsom to get involved?
Not at all. This is really a collective effort and we welcome all locals and non-locals to get involved – even if you are on the outskirts of FCUSD territory or nearby cities.
Can I get a tax write-off for making a donation?
Checks can be made out to “Folsom Cordova Community Partnership” since they are a partner to the shoe drive and they have non-profit status (we are not a 501c3 and can therefore not offer tax write-offs, but they can). If you get your check to us, we will get it to them. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact us at 916-595-3735 or email@example.com.
What else can I do to be involved?
Beyond donations, one of the most important things you can do is to let people in your circles of influence know about this effort. Tell your neighbors, family, people at work, friends, and church members. Send out an email with the following link: www.project680.org.
Is it okay to hang up a flyer in my business or put information in our church bulletin?
How will Project 680 get money to the District Liaison?
We will be accepting checks, cash and gift cards for the sake of local students in need. We will give all collected monies to the District Liaison at the end of our shoe drive in order to help fund her district shoe event for needy kids (her event takes place before the end of the year). We will keep a detailed record of all donations given, have a system of checks and balances in place, and then convert all donations into a Payless Shoe Source gift card in order to give the District Liaison for Homeless Services one gift card with all donated funds. This system works very well for the District Liaison and makes things smooth for her.
Why are you called Project 680?
In 2008 there were 680 documented cases of homeless students in the FCUSD. “Homeless” is defined as “an individual who lacks a fixed, regular, and adequate residence.” The students that the school district serves in Folsom and Rancho Cordova are living in unstable places like motels, in homes without a parent or legal guardian, in homes without power or water, in RVs in parking lots, in cars, or in other unstable environments. Being a kid or teenager these days is difficult enough without adding the struggle of instability in living arrangements. When we first heard about the “680”, we were shocked and we knew we had to do something. Shortly after hearing about student homelessness, we formed Project 680 to help support these students in relevant and practical ways.
The FCUSD really looks after homeless students?
The District Liaison for Homeless Services is a paid position within the FCUSD and there is also another full-time position in the office. Additionally there are two part-time positions to help with the effort. Serving needy students is a very real need for the District (and many other districts) in both Rancho Cordova and Folsom and is really about “leaving no child behind.” This emphasis in the District is funded by Title I money through State & Federal programs.
Can our organization or business pledge to raise a certain amount of money or cover a certain number of shoes?
Sure. That would be great. Just let us know.
Is it okay to link to you?
Yep. We welcome links to www.project680.org from blogs, websites, Facebook, forums, and other social networking sites. Project 680 belongs to all of us, so let’s get the word out.
Who can I contact for more information?
You can call Ryan Lundquist at 916-595-3735 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include the subject line “Project 680? in the email so you are not deleted as SPAM.