SCHOOLS across Limerick are coming together to donate pre-loved shoes for a good cause.
From April 17 to 28, pupils from across Limerick will take part in the national ‘In My Shoes’ campaign to collect tens of thousands of gently worn shoes from all over Ireland and send them to underprivileged children in Southern African townships.
Parents across Limerick are being sent up into attics and under the stairs to dig out pairs of sports shoes which are still in good condition but have been outgrown by their owners in the Treaty County.
The campaign is being run by In My Shoes, who in the pre-Covid world worked with schools and families across Ireland to collect 15,000 pairs of used sports shoes and send them to school children in South Africa and Lesotho.
This year they have greatly expanded the campaign to ship thousands more pairs of shoes to help underprivileged children.
“Shoes are more than just foot protection in an African township; they can be the difference between a hopeful or bleak future,” said a spokesperson for the campaign.
“Helping to improve regular school attendance and completion, where a walk to school can be miles, they give learners safety, improve self-esteem, and open doors to after-school sporting activities.”
In My Shoes began a few years ago as an idea floating around in the mind of Sligo-native Ciarán McHugh, seeing township kids in South Africa going barefoot.
He felt that every child should be afforded the basic necessity of a pair of shoes. This idea has now evolved into an expanded plan to send thousands more pairs of shoes to children in need.
Ciaran said: “I have never been involved in a project before where so many wanted to do so much for so little.”
“In My Shoes seems to be a cause of its time. A simple idea but one with the potential to impact thousands of lives, in however small a way, by connecting individual acts of kindness. With shoes come school, and education, a hopeful future”
To get involved with the 2023 ‘In My Shoes’ campaign visit InMyShoesCharity.org. The campaign runs from 17th-28th April and schools in Limerick are encouraged to register via the website.