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One day without shoes

To some it sounded liberating, and to others terrifying. But what was the big deal? How could leaving your shoes behind for one day change another person's life, or even break a cycle?

Arriving at school on Tuesday morning, one could immediately feel the cold ground on your feet gripping your entire body, and then followed the feelings of being uncomfortable, shy and self-conscious. For us, it was one day that we had to get through before we could return to the comforts and confidence that our shoes gave us.

However, for many children all over the world this is an everyday experience, no matter the weather or walking surface. As a school and community we felt that World Barefoot Day would be a perfect opportunity to expose our future generation to the reality of what is going on in the world around us. It was also an opportunity to show our learners that no matter how small you are, you can make a difference.

The teachers and learners were all barefoot and even some brave parents dropped their little ones off taking up the challenge. An overwhelming number of good, wearable shoes streamed into our school on 16 April. Different styles, colours and sizes to suit an array of needs. All the shoes, however, had one thing in common – they were given in love.

Forty-eight black bags of shoes, full to the brim, were handed over to the Potato Foundation. Everyone at Curro Thatchfield had spoken about World Barefoot Day among us, our loved ones and curious onlookers, sparking awareness about the bigger issue of poverty in our world. It is the small acts of kindness that lead to bigger acts of humanity that will help change the futures of so many around us.