SPRINGFIELD TWP. A special program through the Springfield Township's Women's Club has been, almost secretively, going on for more years than the "do gooder" women can count.
It came to the attention of two Springfield school secretaries Carolyn Hohlbaugh and Wanda Beasley that students in the school buildings across the district were in need of tennis shoes.
Hohlbaugh helped to establish Women's Club in 1969 for the purpose of helping the communities of Springfield Township and the village of Lakemore.
Beasley and Hohlbaugh, as members of Women's Club and school secretaries, worked together to begin a shoe program that would allow for the school secretaries to give out Payless shoe gift cards to the parents of a student in need of shoes. Teachers, principals and counselors would recommend the child that was in need of the shoes.
At first, the club received grants to purchase the gift cards and they were divided among the Springfield school buildings.
This year, these kind souls that are pedaling new soles, took $500 from their funds and went to Payless Shoes and purchased 50 pairs of sneakers to stock up for this school year. When a recommendation comes in to the office, each building has a selection of shoes for students in need of them.
Beasley said it was fun to shop for the kids shoes. She and former Springfield kindergarten teacher Rosemary Palcheff, who is a member of the club, shopped for almost three hours to pick out just the right shoes for boys and girls. She was appreciative of the efforts of the Payless manager in helping them get the most for their money.
The Women's Club is open for community members to join. The organization celebrates its 48th year of doing good for the community this year. Throughout the years, it has worked with the school doing eye screenings; donated to Rock the Docks, Friday Night Concerts, Springfield Cares and continue to help the community through donations to the police, fire and parks departments and other programs where needed.
The ladies of the club also give two $1,000 scholarships to Springfield seniors each year; support the Lakemore United Methodist Church's food pantry; and the members ring the bell for the Salvation Army each December. The women raise funds from hosting their annual Autumn Arts and Craft Show held each year the first Saturday in November at Springfield Junior/Senior High School.
Meetings are held at 6:30 p.m. on the second Tuesday of September, October, November, February, March and April at the Springfield Community Center, 2491 Canfield Road. For more information visit www.mystwc.com.