Inspired by the now famous TOMS Shoes story of sustainable charity, members of a Port Elizabeth church recently fitted new shoes to the feet of many preschoolers in Gqebera (Walmer Township).
After viewing the TOMS story in church on April 3, members of St Nicholas Anglican Church joined hundreds of thousands of people around the world who were inspired to go barefoot on April 5. They also went a stage further by raising money and buying shoes for the many children who attend Wabamkela preschool, which is an outreach project of the church. There was much excitement at Wabamkela, in the Xolelananani Centre, when regular volunteers and other congregants fitted new shoes to the children.
The testimony of TOMS founder Blake Mycoskie, as told in an interview for the Global Leadership Summit in South Africa in October 2010, has sparked many conversations around the need to consider the poor and particularly those who could not afford to wear shoes. The story about a business based on a “sell one/donate one” model, has also given many an aspiring entrepreneur a new perspective of how to run a “for profit” business and yet not neglect the Godly injunction to care for the poor.