UVA basketball teams paint shoes with kids at UVA Children's Hospital
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (CBS19 NEWS) -- Members of the University of Virginia men's and women's basketball teams went to UVA Children's Hospital on Wednesday to paint shoes with the kids.
The day was extra special for the kids as athletes showed up and helped more than 130 people paint shoes.
From a blank canvas to a colorful masterpiece, each Nike Air Force One shoe was carefully hand-painted by both the kids and the players. This is the first year that patients and athletes have worked together to paint shoes.
Ben Herold, a fourth-year student and the founder of Shoes 4 Hope, says that this means a lot for the athletes and the kids to work together for such a great cause. He hopes to continue it in the future by taking the organization national.
"So, right now, we're doing it with Virginia and Virginia Tech, but I've already started talking to UNC and Duke. I've already started reaching out to alumni who are now in like professional leagues," he said. "So, hopefully, this kind of expands to beyond just Virginia and reaches other states and other players and other alumni. But, this is something I do and want to continue to do and not just have it be one game. So yeah, we'll see where it goes.”
There was a lot of orange and blue, but no color was unused. Some kids even added their names to personalize their creations.
For the athletes, this event is more than just painting. It's a way to give back.
"So, today I've been everywhere, I tested the whole rainbow. I've seen colors that work and those that have not. I've been here for four years and I haven't had an experience really like this, especially this time of year. It feels great to just give and be part of something that's bigger than just myself and my family,” UVA men’s basketball guard, Chase Coleman said.
Each shoe will be worn by the coaching staff of both basketball teams during their at-home games starting next month.
Then all 27 pairs of unique and colorful shoes will be auctioned off to raise money for cancer research. This is part of UVA's annual Coaches vs. Cancer campaign.
Every shoe was very thought out. Some kids even said that it took more than an hour for them to finish their designs.