LA CROSSE, Wis. (WKBT) -

A group of area college students is hoping to provide shoes to kids in need across the globe.

Members of a mission seminar class at Viterbo University are organizing a large "Soles 4 Souls" drive across the area. The students in the class are racing against their professor to see who can collect one thousand shoes first.

They've set up donation boxes at Viterbo, Valley View Mall, Rogan's Shoes and schools across the area.

Students say a lack of proper shoes across the world leads to serious health concerns in developing countries.

"There are over 300 million children living in the world with preventable diseases that could have been avoided had they had adequate footwear," said student Dalton Yocum. "Unsanitary living conditions, they're walking around in it, contracting diseases from trash."

Soles 4 Souls asks that donated shoes are gently used with no holes and soles that aren't completely worn down. They'll also accept flip flops and heels. The drive runs through December 17th.