Oklahoma Charities Help To Provide Sporting Goods To Children

Tuesday, June 10th 2014, 6:49 pm
By: Dana Hertneky

A number of charities including the "Wes Welker Foundation" and "Fields and Future" have spent a lot of money improving athletic fields here in the city.

The problem is, no matter how beautiful the fields are, many kids don't have the equipment or even the shoes to play. That's where Cleats for Kids come in.

11-year-old Marquez Cyrus loves basketball, but a couple years ago, just as that love was starting to blossom and the season was starting; a critical part of his game was missing.

He didn't have any basketball shoes and that's when his mother, a single mom of five adopted boys contacted Cleats for Kids. Two days later, Marquez had his basketball shoes.

"A lot of these kids aren't playing sports simply because they don't have a pair of cleats or a pair of basketball shoes or track shoes," said founder and president Stacy McDaniel.

The charity, now going on its third year takes used, donated shoes and athletic equipment, uses volunteers to clean them up then gives them to kids who need them.

"She's been able to give a thousand pairs of shoes to kids in the neighborhood and that's for every sport you can think about," said Marquez's mom Lenora Ware, who also coaches just about every sport there is.

In total, Cleats For Kids has turned over 8,200 pairs of shoes or pieces of equipment.

"We want to hear about kids getting involved in sports. It's not about getting them the sporting goods, it's what happens after kids get the sporting goods," said McDaniel.

For Marquez, it's those simple pair of donated shoes that fostered a love for the game and everything that comes with it.

"I was happy because I knew I was going to be able to play basketball," said Marquez.

Cleats For Kids are also looking for volunteers to sort and clean all of those donations.

Click here for more information on how you can donate.