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Skechers Friendship Walk Raises Record $2.6 Million

Oct 27, 2021 12:43PM ● By Dig Mb Staff

Skechers Friendship Walk 2021. Photo Credit: Getty Images

The Skechers Pier to Pier Friendship Walk returned to Manhattan Beach on Sunday and broke new records, with approximately 17,000 participants and more than $2.6 million raised for education and children with special needs.

“The Skechers Pier to Pier Friendship Walk is about raising much needed funds for children with special needs and education, but today was an event like no other. The joy on the faces of so many friends and family moved me and truly brought home why we have this annual event,” said Michael Greenberg, co-founder of the Skechers Pier to Pier Friendship Walk.

Greenberg continued: “Huge thanks to Kinecta, all of our generous sponsors, our celebrities and thousands of participants. Their sponsorship, contribution and enthusiasm illustrate both a giving spirit and how much they believe, like I do, that our future rests in the hands of these bright kids. We just need to provide the resources so they can be all they can.”

The event was supported by presenting sponsor Kinecta Federal Credit Union as well as more than 100 other businesses and partners. It featured appearances by Sugar Ray Leonard, Brooke
Burke, and Meb Keflezighi, plus live performances by Young Selena singer Madison Taylor Baez, Dance Moms’ GiaNia Paolantonio and He’s All That actor Gabe DeGuzman.

“It was such an honor to take part in this incredible walk. I connected with it very personally,” said four- time Olympian and Boston and New York City Marathon Champion Meb Keflezighi. “When I first came to America as a child, it was at school where I became a competitive runner—and those early days of training and racing have inspired every part of my life and have given me opportunities beyond my greatest dreams. By funding athletics, activities, clubs, classes, teachers and facilities for all of these children at the Friendship Foundation and schools, we’re giving this entire generation a chance to see how big their lives can really be.”

The Friendship Foundation is one of the primary beneficiaries of the walk. 

“The Skechers Pier to Pier Friendship Walk’s funds have helped transform the Friendship Foundation from a dedicated community club to a world-class organization that is redefining possibilities for children with special needs,” said Yossi Mintz, executive director of Friendship
Foundation. “We’re helping in so many ways—from Zoom pals and friendship clubs at over 40 schools, which buddies up students with special needs to mainstream them with children on campus; to popular in-person clubs, enrichment classes, sporting events and our upcoming Friendship Foundation Campus that will break ground early next year with plans to open in 2023. All combined, we’re on the cusp of a great new chapter for children and young adults with special needs to get an education and job training so that they can be a part of the workforce of our great country. We’re grateful for how much the walk has inspired other children to welcome these wonderful kids into their lives.”

Walk Has Raised More than $17 Million to Date


Historically California’s largest event for children with special needs and education, the 3.5-mile Skechers Pier to Pier Friendship Walk has raised more than $17 million to date for public schools, scholarships and the Friendship Foundation.

Donations from the Friendship Walk support The Friendship Foundation and education foundations for public schools. The Friendship Foundation offers children with special needs one-on-one peer visits and social recreational activities, from online gatherings to summer camps, sporting event outings and classes such as music, yoga, cooking, art and drama.

The event also helps enhance school facilities, reduce class sizes, update labs, libraries and facilities; as well as protect teachers’ jobs.

This year, the Skechers Foundation’s national scholarship program will donate a portion of the proceeds to students with financial need and proven excellence in academics, athletics and leadership. A total of $620,000 has been awarded to date.

In addition to Kinecta, Friendship Walk sponsors include The CET Foundation, Nickelodeon, Steel Sports, Steel Partners, McCarthy Building Companies, Vertra, Dakine, Dreamworks Animation, The MBS Group, Continental Development, United Legwear & Apparel, Chevron, Moose Toys, Petco Love, Ross Stores, simplehuman, and more.

To watch this year’s Skechers Pier to Pier Friendship Walk and learn more about the event, visit skechersfriendshipwalk.com.

Skechers, based in Manhattan Beach, designs, develops and markets a diverse range of lifestyle and performance footwear, apparel and accessories for men, women and children. The company’s collections are available in the United States and over 170 countries and territories via department and specialty stores, and direct to consumers through 4,057 company- and third-party-owned retail stores and e-commerce websites.

The Skechers Foundation was established to provide families around the world with the necessities and skills to succeed in life. In addition to organizing the Skechers Pier to Pier Friendship Walk, the Skechers Foundation funds tax-exempt, 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations that provide education and job training, shoes, clothing, fitness and nutrition guidance to communities in need.

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