LOS ANGELES—The students of 99th Street Elementary School received a visit from Los Angeles Rams players, mascot Rampage and Rams Cheerleaders for a special gesture on Tuesday, November 28. Over 500 students were given shoes in a partnership between the Los Angeles Rams and Shoes That Fit.

“It means a lot giving out these shoes, when I was a kid I always thought new shoes would make me run faster and jump higher,” said Rams offensive lineman Steve Avila. Cornerback Tre Tomlinson and wide receiver Xavier Smith participated in NFL PLAY 60 Activision events.

Avila was sweating from a brutal game of tug of war he admitted to losing, the kids than tested just how high they could reach in the vertical jump.

Shoes That Fit, based out of Claremont, provided the new ‘Kicks.’ The non-profit tackles one of the most visible signs of poverty in America by giving children in need new athletic shoes to attend school with dignity and joy, prepared to learn, play and thrive.

A new pair of shoes can be a life-changing event for a child. School attendance, self-esteem and behavior improve. Physical activity increases. Smiles return. Chief Strategy Officer Nekeda Newell-Hall explained why they teamed up with the Rams.

“It’s Giving Tuesday, we have the pleasure of being with the Rams to give out new shoes. Here in L.A. we love giving back to the community, and our amazing partner the Rams are taking the time to spend the day with them,” said Newell-Hall.

This event is part of the Rams ‘Season Of Giving’ community initiative.

Alberto M. Carvalho, Superintendent of Los Angeles Unified School District explains how serious the situation is for our students.

“The sad reality is that eighty percent of our students in the community live either below or at the poverty line, these shoes are essential. The Rams are ever so present in our school system providing inspiration,” said Carvalho.

Avila was excited to come out and see the kids faces light up at 99th Street Elementary.