An Ohio State University graduate is training for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo. But Maggie Barrie isn't just looking to win medals — she also wants to inspire kids in her home country.
“Sierra Leone is a third-world country. It doesn't have a lot of resources. It went through a lot of turmoil and war. There's a lot of people who don't have opportunities that I do. As a young athlete, I promised myself I would always give back to my country. I wouldn't just be on TV — just represent them — I want to make a difference for young athletes,” Barrie said.
She started a shoe drive with a few of her lightly-used running shoes, then her teammates and coaches soon joined in. Barrie and her dad handed out the shoes in Sierra Leone last week.
“To them, it was a huge difference. They don't have those things,” Barrie said.
She's going to have another shoe drive in July to be able to give more athletes the step up she got.
“I'm going to use my influence on Instagram or as a racer or competitor and give them supplies, shoes and advocate any way I can so when I'm done with track, I leave a legacy,” Barrie said.
You can find Barrie's Instagram page here.