Local Athlete’s Foot stores to give extra time to kids with special needs

There to help: The Athlete's Foot store manager Leah Kewley and store owner Shannon Nance want to go above and beyond to make shopping for back to school shoes less stressful for children with special needs. Picture: Ashleigh Tullis
There to help: The Athlete's Foot store manager Leah Kewley and store owner Shannon Nance want to go above and beyond to make shopping for back to school shoes less stressful for children with special needs. Picture: Ashleigh Tullis

Finding the perfect-fitting school shoe is stressful for most parents and children at the start of each year.

Spare a thought for how stressful it is for parents and special needs children at back to school time.

That’s why the staff at The Athlete’s Foot at Narellan Town Centre and Macarthur Square will open early and close late so parents and special needs children can feel comfortable when finding that perfect fit.

Store owner Shannon Nance said back to school shopping was often daunting for children with special needs.

“In January, our stores are jammed packed and they can be noisy, hot and have bright lights,” Mr Nance said.

“That can be stressful and trigger different emotions in kids with special needs.

“We want to alleviate that stress so we will open early and close later for parents who want to bring their children in at a quieter time.”

Mr Nance said parents could call or see the staff in store to book an appointment outside of normal trading hours.

“Not every child with special needs will need it but we want to provide the option for parents,” he said.

Mr Nance said parents and children often felt angst about buying shoes because they know it can sometimes take a long time to find the perfect fitting shoe.

“Children often know what is coming when they walk into a shoe store,” he said.

“We want our staff to be able to take the time to sit, listen and give 100 per cent care and attention to finding kids with special needs the perfect fit.”

Visit Narellan and Macarthur Square websites for store details.

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