Great Kids doing Great Things: BHS Junior, Roan Brumwell’s shoe drive for Charity this Monday, August 14th!

Roan Brumwell and his family moved to Bainbridge Island from Florida in 2014 after his father, Dr. Eric Brumwell, retired from U.S. Navy. “Although I am originally from the east coast, I have always felt like a Bainbridge native and embrace growing up here,” Roan said.

While he was a student at Sakai Intermediate School, his mother, Kathryn McGowan started a shoe drive through the school’s PTA, working through Soles4Souls and the Nike Reuse-a-Shoe program. Alejandro Henao, a family friend and coach for the Bainbridge Island Football Club,  began a clothing donation foundation, Good Play America, and both would serve as inspiration for Roan to begin his own shoe drive this year while participating in the All Comers Track Meet at Woodward Elementary.

Roan isn’t a novice when it comes to working towards a better community and world. He’s a volunteer at a local foodbank in Seattle that primarily serves refugees from Asia and he’s registered as a diver with the Washington Scuba Alliance, which carries out reef cleanups and rebuilding throughout the Puget Sound.

Although this is his first year working with the Kiwanis Club at their All Comers Track Meet, Roan said it’s an amazing environment and he’s happy to be part of it. “This mini shoe drive is the first step towards starting a local flash drive series,” he explained. “This will involve setting up other mini collection events for things such as old clothes and electronics to be donated and repurposed.” Each event will be tailored to make it easy for participants to donate, such as leaving donated items on their front porches for pick up. “I am still in the process of working all the details out, but I see great potential in this idea.”

Kiwanis All Comers Track Meet 5 images courtesy of the Bainbridge Kiwanis ClubRoan will have three boxes set up next to the hospitality table at this Monday’s Track Meet (please note, this is the last meet of the year) to collect shoes for all three charities. Each box will be labelled with the name of the nonprofit, and the type of shoes they accept. At the end of the meet, Roan will personally deliver the donations to each charitable organization. All sneaker, shoe, and cleat donations should be in wearable condition. Please note, you do not have to be a participant in the Track Meet, donations are welcome regardless.

About the shoe drive programs:

Good Play America Foundation’s mission is to bring joy and the potential of soccer to the children of Colombia by providing resources and giving them hope to turn their dreams into reality. They envision a future where every child in Colombia has access to quality soccer and a brighter future. Alejandro Henao was born in Cali, Colombia and has played, and been a fan of fútbol his whole life. He began the Good Play America Foundation in 2022. Alejandro is a research scientist with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) with numerous publications and continues to present at national and international conferences. He is also a soccer coach with the Bainbridge Island Football Club. To learn more about the foundation, visit their website here: Good Play America Foundation

Soles4Souls focuses on four core values: 4RELIEF, which helps get new shoes and clothing to people in crisis situations; 4OPPORTUNITY partners with community-based nonprofit organizations in developing countries to help entrepreneurs start and grow businesses that sell donated shoes and clothing; 4EVERYKID partners with schools across the U.S. to get new athletic shoes to children who are experiencing homelessness; and 4THEPLANET cares for our planet and for people by extending the life of shoes and clothing that might’ve otherwise been prematurely discarded. To learn more, visit their website here:

The Nike Reuse-a-Shoe program donates or recycles your used Nike athletic gear so that it can live on with others. To learn more, visit their website here: Recycle + Donate Your Athletic Gear.

The All Comers Track Meet is a free event, aimed for runners of all ages. Registration begins at 5:30 p.m. at the Woodward Middle School track. Races start at 6 p.m. If you’d like to learn more, visit our previous article here: Time to Don Your Running Shoes and Join in the Kiwanis Club’s All Comers Track Meet | THE ISLAND WANDERER

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