Mill Creek Baptist Church has recently expanded its outreach to include saving soles.
After observing the impact of Southwest City's Kicks 4 Kids program, Kitty Collingsworth approached Mill Creek Baptist's board of directors about adopting a similar operation. Kicks 4 Kids provides new, fitted socks and shoes for each player on Southwest City's fifth- and sixth-grade basketball teams.
"It's such a worthwhile project," Collingsworth said. She and her husband operate Dave's Supermarket in town and have generously supported the endeavor each year. But this year, with the motivation of Collingsworth, the Mill Creek Baptist congregation has rallied together to provide new socks and shoes to two other elementary school's teams -- White Rock and Noel.
Collingsworth explained that, because of the church's centralized location on east Highway 90, nestled between the two zip codes, it seemed fitting to sponsor both.
The morale boost is undeniable as well.
"It's good for them to know the community cares for them," Collingsworth said. "It's also good for them to be involved and be part of a team. Some of them haven't had the chance to do that before."
Between the fifth- and sixth-grade boys' and girls' teams, Collingsworth said there are 50 pairs of feet to be cared for. Mill Creek Baptist is working with Sports Locker out of Grove, Okla., to measure, fit and deliver the athletic gear before the basketball season is in full swing.