Shoe drives to save soles

With just a pen and a paper and a passion for giving back to the community, two high school students came together and created an organization called Happy Feet.

Happy Feet was created in 2012 by then-El Camino High School students Azadeh Hanukaai and Pardees Fassihi, who showed an interest in giving back to their community. Thinking outside the box, instead of donating clothes or canned goods, they decided to take another route and give shoes instead.

“I thought it was a great idea,” Hanukaai said. “Just to help people that aren’t in a great economic situation, makes me happy when I can help.”

Happy Feet has also teamed up with Soles 4 Souls which is a global non-profit institution dedicated to fighting poverty and collecting new and used shoes and clothes from individuals, organizations and schools.

Along with shoe drives, the club has completed other projects to continue to give back to the less fortunate, including bake sales and collecting shoes from elementary schools.

“The next shoe drive we have, we want to go back to Calabash Elementary School in Woodland Hills during spring break,” Fassihi said. “We will be passing out flyers to get the word out.”

They plan on eventually turning Happy Feet into a non-profit organization, and want to keep the club going at Pierce College as well as El Camino High School. They want to expand the name and keep the club up and active.

“In 10 years, I hope Happy Feet will continue to help people in the community in the way that I and the rest of the club are able to,” said club member Alexis Morris.

This is just the beginning for the club. Knowing that children do not have to worry about basic necessities is a feeling that Happy Feet strives for.

As of now, Happy Feet does not have a day or time in which the club meets, but they will be announcing that information soon.