A Message From Our Founders
Recent events in Minnesota and across the US evoke feelings of hurt and anger about racism in our country. We are all affected. Our leaders and organizations are challenged to not be silent. But what do we say and how do we say it? Many local stakeholders have issued statements condemning systemic racisms as well as violence and lawlessness. We also reject racism, violence, and criminal actions in all of their forms.
While we do not have answers to all the complex and significant problems in our communities, we believe that some fundamentals will help lead to solutions. Constructive words are important whether in laws, speeches, or statements. Yet if words alone solved problems then we would not be where we are today. Lasting solutions can only be achieved if communication, mutual respect, and opportunity are followed with living these through positive action. We must all be the change.
Cleats for Kids was started as a grass roots organization with the ideas that individuals solve problems and that each of us can act positively to contribute to the solution. We were drawn to giving all kids the opportunity to play sports because it brings together families of all backgrounds and zip codes and teaches the values of discipline, perseverance, and teamwork. Literally one person donating one pair of shoes can change a life. Our first video asked to help bring our local communities together and level the playing field.
How can one small non-profit in one city change racism in America? Alone we cannot. But every time one person gives a kid a donated pair of shoes so that he or she can play a sport and that kid does the same for another, we pray that one small step has been added to the growing march for true equality in our communities.
Mark and Stacy McDaniel
Oklahoma Cleats for Kids