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SFM Renaissance students led campaign that collected nearly 2k pairs of socks for homeless

Published Monday, November 12, 2018

SFM Renaissance students with socks collected during Red Ribbon Week

SFM Renaissance students with socks collected during Red Ribbon Week (BCSD photo)

Like many students around the country, Renaissance Club members at Sedgefield Middle spend a significant amount of time on character education.

A recent dive into a series of videos focused on character development and tangible life lessons sparked a desire not just to understand positive character traits, but to embrace them and take action.

SFM teacher and Renaissance co-sponsor Courtenaye Johnson said students “connected” with the host of the video series, Mike Smith. That connection led them to participate in Skate for Change – a global initiative started by Smith get new, clean socks to the homeless.

“Socks are the most requested, but least donated item to homeless shelters across the country,” Johnson said. “Mike’s non-profit was spear-heading a 20,000 pairs of socks by Christmas campaign, and we decided we wanted to be a part of it.”

Renaissance Club students set a school-wide goal of 1,000 pairs for Red Ribbon Week. When they ended their campaign, they realized they had nearly doubled their goal with about 2,000 pairs of donated socks.

“We were concerned at first that the goal might be too high, but the students felt confident that we could achieve it,” Johnson said.

The initiative was embraced by the majority of the student body. Johnson said a giant thermometer tracked progress, and homeroom classes maintained leaderboards to encourage friendly competition.

“It was really heart-warming to see the kids beaming with pride in what they had achieved,” she said.

All donations from the SFM “Sock it to Drugs” drive were provided to One80 Place in Charleston.

“I hope that students were able to see that a simple act of kindness may seem small, but when that same act is performed by many, that it can turn into something pretty incredible,” Johnson said.