Jake Rosenblum has got sole -- and he's making sure other local youths have it, too.
The Massapequa High School junior has collected more than 300 pairs of gently used boys' and girls' sneakers from schoolmates since the spring through his nonprofit organization, called Sole Survivors. The sneakers go to the Long Island Coalition for the Homeless, which distributes them to local children in need.
The idea to collect the shoes came about after Rosenblum realized how many extra pairs of sneakers he and his friends own.
"I'm very fortunate when I see the shoes in my closet, but some kids are not as fortunate," said Rosenblum, 16. Of the donations so far, he said: "There's been more than I expected. It's so awesome to see how many people have been helping out."
To collect the donations, Rosenblum and his family created a unique bin using chain-link fencing, with an opening through which people drop the shoes, with a basketball hoop attached as an eye-catching decorative element. The collection bin is in the high school lobby. He also hung posters in the building's hallways and, with the help of the Student Council, made announcements over the public address system.
Rosenblum, who is president of the Student Council, is a member of the school's Peer AIDS Club, the Shared Decision-Making Committee and the National Junior Honor Society.
Those interested in donating sneakers can visit Sole Survivors' Facebook page.