Members of the York Vikings Rotary Club have donated over £2,000 in vouchers for City of York Council to redeem as 57 pairs of school shoes for the children of local families in greatest need.

Ahead of the start of the academic year, some of the eligible children will be taken to be measured and fitted with the new footwear by their key workers from the council, while other families able to take the trip to the shops, will do so themselves.

The project was inspired by two York Vikings Rotary Club members, Ron Gatenby and Chris Greenall, the Managing Director of D E Ford Insurance Brokers, York, whose marketing team has been supporting this.

Being keen to do something a little different to support the development of children in York, the two members secured this project’s funding from Viking’s community services charitable fund.

Mark Inman, York Vikings’ President, commented: “The York Vikings school shoes project will not only help provide a number of children with correctly-fitting footwear but it is also providing an essential item for the new school year. To be able to help reduce the stress preparing the start of term and to help meet the cost of primary school uniform for families is something of which the York Vikings are extremely proud.”

Chris Greenall, Managing Director of D E Ford Insurance Brokers, said: “Correctly fitted school shoes help reduce the risk of injury, improve comfort and enhance overall performance. With children spending around 30 hours a week in their school shoes, this is a project which we hope will continue into the future.”

Councillor Stuart Rawlings, Executive Member for Education, Children and Young People, said: “I very much welcome this partnership and the assistance of a local charitable trust in helping some of our most vulnerable families prepare for the new school year. It supplements the assistance already available for school uniforms and will greatly assist children from financially challenged backgrounds as they start the next stage of their education.”

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