Petra, a six-year old girl at the Roanoke (Va.) church, felt inspired to help those in need after fellow church members committed to handing out lunches to the homeless once a month.
“We noticed several of the men coming to get lunches were wearing worn shoes,” said Jennifer Dodge, Petra’s mother. “Later, Petra told me that she wanted to buy shoes for those who needed them. Initially, I put the idea on the back burner, but Petra persistently reminded me that she wanted to do this.”
Within four months, the Dodges officially started Petra and William’s Shoe Ministry—named after Petra and her younger brother William—and donated nearly 60 pairs of shoes to the Roanoke Area Ministries House after a simple fundraiser. Inspired by what this little girl has wanted to accomplish, local businesses, like Super Shoes, have offered assistance by extending a discount to the shoes the family purchases for donation.
Dodge says she helps steer this ministry, but encourages and allows her children to run it as much as possible. “I want my kids to be mission-minded,” she says. “Petra decides what she wants to hand write on the cards that goes with each pair of shoes and socks. She chose, on her own, to put ‘Jesus loves you’ with a heart and cross. I’m so proud of her thoughtful and simple message and the desire she has, at such a young age, to help people.”
The Dodge family is in the midst of another fundraiser. To learn more about this ministry search for Petra’s Shoe Ministry on Facebook or email firstname.lastname@example.org