I am going barefoot in July – and I want you to help me.
Just about a year ago, while at a gathering for Nazarene Pastors in Alaska, I heard about an organization called Because International. This group of folks is dedicated to practical compassion – meaning they work to meet known needs in developing countries through creative thinking and innovation. One such need was shoes for kids. It’s something I’d never thought much about before. I’ve never lacked shoes – and neither has my daughter: when her feet grow I just buy another pair of shoes. Yet not everyone has that luxury. Shoes are a luxury – and I didn’t even think of that.
Because International learned that kids in other countries don’t have access to shoes – and if they do happen to have a pair, when they grow out of them they can’t just go buy another pair. So the majority of children go barefoot – in the dirty streets, over rocks and in fields, streams and the toliet. It’s not by choice. As these kids go barefoot they are exposed to soil-transmitted parasites and diseases that can cause infection, loss of limbs or even death: simply for lack of shoes.
After seeing the need in developing countries firsthand in 2007 – the folks at Because International developed the SHOE THAT GROWS 5 sizes and will last 5 years! I have a pair of these shoes on my desk – they are incredibly well made. Check out these two videos to hear about it from the folks who made it – and then read about how you can help!
It’s been said that you can’t truly understand someone unless you walk a mile in their shoes. In this case – perhaps we can’t understand someone unless we walk a mile barefoot. So that is what I intend to do. For the month of July I will forgo shoes and live life barefoot in an effort raise awareness and funds for the SHOE THAT GROWS. I will carry my pair of SHOES THAT GROW with me wherever I go, along with some information cards for those who are curious, or who would like to donate. All the funds collected will be sent with the funds raised at other Nazarene churches in Alaska to Because International so more kids can have shoes!
Want to get involved? Here are simple ways you can help get shoes to kids that need them:
- Sponsor me as I walk barefoot in July. $1 a day or $31 for the month is the equivalent of two pairs of shoes!
- A simple cash donation of any amount.
- Pray for Because International.
- Pray for the kids who need shoes.
- Go through your closet and donate clothing and shoes that are good condition to your local women’s shelter, or homeless shelter. Make a difference in your community!
- Share this blog to spread the word!
Help your kids get involved too! Set out a pair of shoes on the kitchen table, or somewhere you will see every day. Collect spare change in the shoes all month and then count it up at the end of the month and donate it via the link below. Encourage your kids to do some extra chores, mow the neighbors lawn, and find the lost coins under the couch!
We can make a difference together!
EMAIL me with questions! I’d love to tell you more about this project!