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Spokane runner starts shoe drive for low-income kids

SPOKANE, Wash. - Bloomsday and Junior Bloomsday are about a month away, which means you might be spicing up your wardrobe ahead of the big race. But, new shoes can get expensive, especially for low-income families with growing kids. One Spokane runner is working to make sure no child says no to running because they don't have the proper footwear.

Miran McCash has been an avid runner for about ten years. She also coaches high school track and is a personal running coach. McCash is originally from Seattle, where she started a running club. When she moved to Spokane more than a year ago, she learned how popular the running community is in the Inland Northwest.

She came up with Kicks for Kids as a senior capstone project for the program she's pursuing at Eastern Washington University. But during our interview with the runner, we learned, it's about much more.

It's a feeling you get when you run. Some may call it endorphins, others may just call it love.

"I saw how much it changed my life, and how much it's changed a lot of people's lives, like - oh, I'm going to start crying," said Miran McCash, creator of Spokane Kicks for Kids.

Running is a passion for McCash. You can clearly tell in her stride and in her voice.

"Running is just a huge impact, because anyone can run. It doesn't matter how fast or how slow you are. If you're a runner, then you're going to make friends with another runner, because you guys have that special bond," McCash said.

This love inspired her to create Kicks for Kids. So others could share that same feeling.

"So I thought - okay, great. I could start this shoe drive in Spokane, and have these shoes for low-income kids so they can run stuff for like Junior Bloomsday, Bloomsday, there's so many different types of runs in Spokane," McCash said.

Last winter, McCash raised $500 from friends and family for the materials to make four bins to collect shoes. She put them together in early March and set them up inside several Spokane businesses.

"Every two to three weeks, I 'm going to go over to each location, check them, and then pick up the shoes," McCash said.

The runner said every child deserves to live an active lifestyle, whether it's running, jogging or walking.

"We don't want that to be a barrier for them to go out and run, because they don't have the right shoes," McCash said.

The hope is that Kicks for Kids closes that gap, so that children can carry this lifestyle into adulthood.

And have that same joy mccash has had for the past decade and counting.

"If we can start young, and have these kids start - it doesn't have to be running, even walking - but if we can start them young and make this a lifestyle, then we know that we did something really good," McCash said.

If you're interested in donating, there are four Kicks for Kids dropoff locations in Spokane:

  • U-District PT
    • 730 N. Hamilton St.
  • farmgirlfit
    • 128 S. Sherman St.
  • Lilac Bloomsday Association.
    • 1414 N. Belt St.
  • Advantage Therapeutic Associates - South Hill
    • 3022 E. 57th Ave. #19

Kicks for Fids is scheduled to run right up until Bloomsday, then the shoes will be distributed to local kids who need them. However, McCash said she has every intention to start the shoe drive again after that.


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