World Water Day 2011 just passed. On March 22, we recognized and spread awareness for millions, who do not have access to clean water. April 5, 2011, TOMS Shoes will host ONE DAY WITHOUT SHOES. I’m joining them. It seems fitting to me to note that the millions of women and children walking miles to collect water usually do so without shoes. With bare feet, they plod miles for water, medical help, and those fortunate enough, to school. Walking barefoot not only impedes the rate of travel, but in countries like Ethiopia, shoes prevent podoconiosis, a disease easily preventable but that will leave populations lame if left untreated; and it protects from glass, metals, and the open sewage on the streets.
In November, I was blessed for a quick return trip to Ethiopia. As I shared in an earlier post (which you can read HERE), we met shoeless women, children, and disabled on Entoto Mountain climbing down toward town to vend their collected wares. We also visited Korah where we saw thousands scavenging through trash, which was full of needles, shards, and metals, either barefooted or in foot ware so dilapidated they should not be called shoes. Many may consider shoes a luxury; but in these types of environments, shoes offer protection and prevent disease and injury.
ONE DAY WITHOUT SHOES is an effort to raise awareness for those, who go without shoes. Joining in is easy, fun, and cost free! Tomorrow, I will blog on ways to raise awareness and be creative. You’ll be so excited you’ll demand to join the fun…especially when you know I’m giving away a pair of TOMS (winner’s choice) to the person, who raises the most awareness and is most creative in their approach. Start planning! Create your POA. Take photos, blog, and document your ONE DAY and your prep.
Happy Barefoot to you!