Red Sneakers for Oakley will host its annual International Red Sneakers Day to support food allergy awareness on May 20. The organization will host a corresponding soccer tournament in partnership with Palm Beach Day Academy in memory of Oakley Debbs. All are encouraged to wear their red sneakers on the very field that Oakley once played on.
Dr. Jonathan Spergel, chief of the Allergy Program at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, and Dr. Elena E. Perez, allergy and immunology specialist at Allergy Associates of the Palm Beaches, will don their red sneakers to address the students and parents of Palm Beach Day Academy about the dangers of food allergies.
Red Sneakers for Oakley, a nonprofit organization, has raised awareness about the dangers of food allergies. Robert and Merrill Debbs experienced a life altering event after the death of their 11-year-old son, Oakley, due to a fatal allergic reaction to nuts. Oakley loved his red sneakers and the family decided to use them as a powerful symbol for increased education and awareness for those with and without food allergies.
The Debbs established May 20 as a day dedicated to the recognition of Oakley and the importance of educating others about the dangers of food allergies. This is accomplished through school programs, social media, community events, and public service announcements.
The nonprofit raises awareness for the 1 in 13 kids in the United States with a food allergy and approximately 32 million Americans with food allergies. Red Sneakers for Oakley has reached millions of people worldwide.
Supporters can post a photo of themselves wearing red sneakers (or anything red) with a caption about Oakley and/or food allergies. Learn more here.