‘Our Shoes’ call on Dublin schools for help

by Gazette Reporter
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Does your house have shoes that no longer fit your kids? `Now you can give them a new life on the feet of children in the South African townships.

Last month an Irish charity delivered 20,000 pairs of pre-loved sports shoes donated by children from all over Ireland to Cape Town in South Africa for wear by children in deprived townships. Many of the shoes came from homes in Dublin and surrounding counties.

The charity, named Our Shoes, has now embarked on its 2024 campaign. The donation method is simple:  National schools register to take part in the appeal via the website  www.ourshoes.ie 

Children or parents bring the shoes to the school from where they will be collected by courier nationwide. Check on the Locator Map to see if your school is already registered for the 2024 campaign. If they are not, please encourage them to do so.

Last year Our Shoes collected 20,000 shoes from 350 schools throughout Ireland. More than 100 volunteers helped gather, sort and pack the shoes into 500 specially made boxes in a Sligo warehouse to be transported to Cape Town.

The Our Shoes charity was set up by Sligo native Ciarán McHugh. The initiative stemmed from a business trip to Africa some years ago when he visited the Khayelitsha township in Cape Town and saw children playing sports without shoes.

In late February this year Ciaran visited South Africa again and saw the shoes being delivered to children the townships. He was met by the Mayor of Cape Town Geordan Hill-Lewis who thanked all those who donated the sneakers.

Viewing the cargo of boots the Mayor said: “These shoes that came all the way from Ireland are going to go to wonderful use helping kids across South Africa, not just in Cape Town, so thank you so much for giving of your time and resources to make a difference here”.

Appealing for the donation of shoes for the 2024 campaign Ciaran McHugh said: “We are on a mission to collect as many pre-loved sports shoes as we can this year. They will be donated to those in need in the townships of Southern Africa.

Children receiving shoes

“So dig out your old shoes, give them a new life and help make a difference to children, worlds away.  With your support, we can continue our mission to provide comfort, dignity, and opportunity to those who need it most.

“Together, we can pave the way for positive change, one step at a time. It’s their future, their dignity, our shoes”. 

All the information about how schools can register and how to donate shoes is available on the charity’s website. Readers can also check to see the schools in Dublin and surrounding areas that are already registered. 

For further information click on www.ourshoes.ie

Photos: OurShoes.ie

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