February 13, 2014 at 1:00 am

Giveaway offers shoes, hope to Detroit students

GM Powertrain employee and volunteer Sherelle O'Connell washes the feet of Detroit Leadership Accademy student Demarkus Ford, 9, on Thursday during an event sponsored by Buick at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in Detroit. (Steve Perez / The Detroit News)

About 290 Detroit Leadership Academy students received new shoes Thursday during an event at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History.

The Shoes of Hope distribution, which included foot-washing and also celebrated Black History Month, was hosted by Buick and Samaritanís Feet, a group that works to cover the feet of millions of shoeless children worldwide.

This is the third local giveaway in recent years, said Nick Richards, a Buick spokesman.

The students also spoke with participants about their goals, he said.

ďItís more than handing them a pair of shoes. Itís giving them a message of hope, as well.Ē

Emmanuel 'Manny' Ohonme, founder of Samaritan's Feet hugs Detroit ... (Steve Perez)