The National Council of Jewish Women is supporting a shoe drive that will benefit both an empowerment program for New Orleans girls and an economic opportunity program for people in 26 developing nations.

The local empowerment program is Girls on the Run New Orleans, which uses running as a platform to educate, empower and inspire girls in grades three through eight. The program incorporates physical activity to teach specific and well-defined social and personal skills. The 10-week program will culminate in a 5K Dec. 5 at Audubon Park.

Girls on the Run program fees are subsidized at schools where the majority of students are eligible for free or reduced-price lunches. Subsidizing fees at one school will require 300 bags of 25 pairs of shoes, or 7,500 pairs of shoes. GOTR hopes to collect enough shoes to add 33 scholarship sites.

Funds2orgs is a fundraising social enterprise helping create sustainable funding and economic opportunity for both local organizations and people living in developing nations across the globe. Funds2orgs will pay GOTR for the shoes, which will be distributed to people in 26 developing nations around the world. Each person enrolled in the free Funds2orgs microenterprise education program will receive 100 free pairs of shoes to give to families, friends and community members in need. With the remaining shoes, individuals can set up shoe stalls and start earning income. Once their business is established, individuals can return to the Funds2Orgs hubs and purchase shoes to sell at a very low cost.

Contact Jody Portnoff Braunig at Jody@gotrnola.org about dropping shoes off at the GOTR office, or NCJW’s Dana Shepard at Tennisshep@aol.com about dropping off shoes at the NCJW office.