Anna Webb: Local boy uses birthday to walk the walk

awebb@idahostatesman.comOctober 22, 2013 

A man and his shoes: Nate, a local 7-year-old, gave up his own birthday presents so he could help other kids get a new pair of kicks.

PHOTO PROVIDED BY FAMILY ADVOCATES

A young fellow in the community named Nate recently came up with a pretty cool way to celebrate his seventh birthday.

He asked that guests coming to his birthday party buy a pair of shoes for a child in foster care instead of a present for himself.

Nate recently dropped off more than 150 pairs of shoes at the Family Advocate program.

His explanation for his philanthropy is simple. Nate loves shoes. He wanted other kids to experience the lift a new pair of shoes can bring.

The Family Advocate Program oversees the CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate) program. This program provides a trained volunteer to advocate for every child in the foster care system. Family Advocates also offers Families First, a home-based parenting education program for Treasure Valley residents.

To learn more or to donate, visit the organization’s website or call 345-3344.

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED TO HELP RESIDENTS FILL OUT TAX FORMS

If you’re looking for a way to help your community, consider becoming one of the volunteers that helps seniors, low-income residents, men and women with disabilities and others fill out their tax forms.

Volunteers with the VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) program receive training, so no previous experience is necessary.

Organizers note that volunteers learn many aspects of tax return preparation that are in demand — and that can help them build their resumes.

Volunteer hours are flexible. The program opens in January and continues through the tax-filing season. Sites are located throughout Ada and Canyon counties. Find details about becoming a VITA volunteer on IRS.gov. Type the key words “tax volunteer” in the search box. You can also sign up via VolunteerMatch.com or through listings in the “community” section of Craigslist Boise.

DOCUMENTARY LOOKS AT PITBULL PLIGHT

In 1987, Ohio passed a law declaring pit bull dogs inherently vicious. The documentary, “Guilty ‘Til Proven Innocent," looks at breed-specific legislation and its effect on communities, not to mention dogs. A trailer of the documentary can be watched below.

Join pit bull lovers and animal advocates for a special screening of the documentary at 7 p.m., Oct. 24 at the Country Club Plaza Reel Theater 6, 4550 Overland Road in Boise. Tickets are $10 with proceeds benefitting SPOT Spay/Neuter Clinic and kennel enrichment for dogs and cats at the Idaho Humane Society shelter.

Also note that October is Pit Bull Awareness Month. Visit the Idaho Humane Society on Oct. 26 for a day of educational programs meant to change the perception and stereotypes about pit bulls.

The IHS is at 4775 W. Dorman St. in Boise. 342-3508.

TINY HOUSE TOUR WILL BENEFIT BOISE HIGH CHAMBER ORCHESTRA

This home tour is a refreshing departure from many tours that tend to focus on the grand and grandiose. This tour, a benefit for student musicians saving money for an upcoming performance tour, features houses in Boise’s North End that are under 1,000 square feet.

The tour promotes the idea of living modestly, yet well, say organizers — a bounce back from the era of the “McMansion.”

The Boise High Chamber Orchestra and the Boise Architecture Project are co-sponsors of the self-guided tour. It takes place from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 26. Tickets are $20, available at the Boise High School office, 1010 Washington St., or on the day of the event at Goody’s, 13th and Alturas.

KUDOS TO THE BENCH LIONS

The Boise Bench Lions Club has donated more than $17, 000 to the Idaho-Eastern Oregon Lions Sight and Hearing Foundation. The group raised the money during its Hit the Jackpot golf tournament in Nevada in August.

The Idaho Eastern Oregon Lions Sight and Hearing Foundation is a humanitarian organization dedicated to service impacting sight, hearing and health.

HELP YOUTH BRING IMPROVEMENTS TO HIS SCHOOL

Treasure Valley fifth-grader Sam Nuck, 10, is hoping to earn a $30,000 cafeteria makeover for his school, Grace Jordan Elementary, as well as other prizes.

Sam has entered the Ben’s Beginners Cooking Contest, an effort to help children learn to make healthier-eating choices by getting them involved in cooking. It is sponsored by Uncle Ben’s, the rice and other food products company.

You can help by watching Sam’s contest video and voting for it here. Search “83709” to find Sam’s video. The contest runs through Oct. 27.

OPEN HOUSE AT PET HOSPITAL IS A DONATION OPPORTUNITY

Intermountain Pet Hospital hosts an open house from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Oct. 26 at 800 W. Overland Road in Meridian.

The event includes lots of fun stuff, including a pet costume contest, door prizes and educational displays.

The hospital recently founded the Helping Hand Fund, a nonprofit that raises money for pets in need as well as local rescue groups. Come to the party and help the cause. Call 888-2910 for more.

Anna Webb: 377-6431

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