The Put Foot Foundation has raised over R600,000 in its first year of operation, a remarkable first step on its journey to putting school shoes on the feet of young, underprivileged children in South Africa. Funds raised in 2012 will help the foundation to donate 4116 school shoes to 10 schools across Southern Africa.
"We want to show people that making a small difference in the lives of children will have a far reaching and positive impact on the entire country, and continent," commented Daryn Hillhouse, who is the foundation's MD.
"The Put Foot Foundation sets out to give children hope, pride and dignity by giving them a pair of brand new, 100% leather quality South African-made school shoes, so that they can get on with what is important: playing, learning and having fun," he added.
Nine schools will benefit from the 'shoe drop' in February, including four schools in Cape Town (remaining two schools will be announced shortly), two schools in Grahamstown, one school in Durban and two schools in Gauteng:
MC Kharabai School for the Deaf, Lenasia, Johannesburg
The tenth school that will receive much needed school shoes for its learners is based in Zambia, and will receive its shoes during the 2013 Put Foot Rally, organised by social adventure events company, Mountainshak Adventures.
Hillhouse added, "We rely on the help from the crews that participate in the Rally each year. These are passionate and dedicated people who have a sense of adventure and an unwavering love for the continent and its people. Part of the entry criteria is a commitment to raise funds for charity, and the Put Foot Foundation is one of the organisations that crews are encouraged to support. In fact, most of the funds raised to date were contributed by the crews that took part in the 2012 Rally."
Put Foot Foundation Mission
The Put Foot Foundation was founded in 2012 by three otherwise ordinary but big-dreaming passionate young South Africans: Daryn Hillhouse, Mike Sharman and Dan Nash. They have a shared goal of raising enough awareness and funds to donate 100,000 pairs of school shoes to underprivileged children across South Africa in the next five years.
The foundation works closely with schools to identify individuals in need, who are then measured to make sure that each drop will have shoes for every child. "We find that our high quality shoes generally outlast the little feet of a growing child, so we provide shoes a size larger than the current size fitting, to allow the children to get a longer period of usage out of the shoes," he adds.
Hillhouse believes that donors to the foundation should have the chance to see how their donations are being used first hand. The team encourages people to join the Put Foot Foundation as a volunteer, and participate in 'shoe drops'. In addition, anyone who wants to support the foundation can get involved by donating online, volunteering or signing up for the Put Foot Rally.
"We have set out to raise at least R1million in 2013, but with the help of our partners at Buccaneer Shoes, Volkswagen Amarok and the 60 crews taking part in the 2013 Put Foot Rally, I'm anticipating that we will be able to buy shoes for even more children than we originally hoped, for our next round of shoe drops," concluded Hillhouse.
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