Erwin Molley has many roles in the community. He is a Councillor for the Listuguj Mi’gmaq Government, he is a Male Mentor with the Listuguj Community Social Services Directorate, he runs a basketball program, and he is also head of the non-profit organization, Kicks for Kids.
Kicks for Kids began in 2021, and it provides athletic footwear for youth in the community, free of charge. “It started with basketball. I noticed some kids just didn’t have the proper shoes,” said Molley. The organization offers a wide variety of footwear such as basketball shoes, soccer and baseball cleats, skateboard shoes, dance shoes, and more. The organization has also received donations of non-athletic shoes that are still in mint condition that can be worn on more special occasions, like graduation ceremonies. Molley provides footwear for community members who are currently not residing in Listuguj. Individuals can purchase reasonably priced sports footwear, provide Molley with proof of the purchase, and can get reimbursed.
Kicks for Kids gives all children in the community an equal opportunity to take part in sports. Having this resource may take some financial stress off families. Some families have multiple children who are enrolled in sports, and shoes can run $50-$90. While it is a free service for all children, Molley does encourage youth to show they are committed to a sport and are dedicated when it comes to attending practices and games before opting for free footwear.
Having the proper footwear when playing sports leads to more confidence in our youth. It allows them to live more healthy and active lifestyles. Playing sports is beneficial and helps develop sportsmanship and teamwork skills, and Kicks for Kids assists children in achieving this.
The program is non-profit, and Molley volunteers his time to ensure the footwear is always stocked up for the community. “It has to be an ongoing, steady thing because everybody’s feet grow,” laughed Molley. When it comes to the program itself, Molley receives support and donations from several sources, such as small businesses, branches of the Listuguj Mi’gmaq Government, and the public in general.
If you or your child would like a free pair of shoes to participate in sports, you can reach out to Erwin Molley via Facebook, or stop into the Youth Centre to inquire. As of recently there is an official Kicks for Kids page that provides information and updates.
By Ann Marie Jacques