In South Africa, there are over 7 million children who have never owned or worn a pair of brand new school shoes. These children have become accustomed to walking barefoot across rough African terrain. But in an ideal world, every child should have a pair of shoes to protect them from having to walk barefoot across thorny ground or hot tar…
For most western children, a pair of shoes is not a luxury, and they grow up accustomed to having many pairs of shoes. The essence of the Soul 2 Sole project is to provide a pair of shoes to as many underprivileged children as possible.
This small gesture can make a profound impact on the dignity of the child, and also give them hope for the future. The Soul 2 Sole project works to connect individuals and groups with underprivileged schools to provide footwear, funds, or other resources needed by the school and its community.
On 29 January 2016, our teams arrived to an excited buzz of energy at Matabetulu Primary School in Inanda by the Shembe village, Ebuhleni. Over 288 school pupils were on their tiptoes, awaiting the first glimpse of their shiny new shoes.
The children of Matabetulu Primary School received:
290 pairs of school shoes
290 units of Lion Match shoe polish
290 string bags
Educational toys for Grade R pupils
Upon arrival, the team received a warm welcome from pupils, teachers and parents alike, with the children bursting into song, filling the air with a sense of excitement. The proceedings of the day started off with a welcome from the Deputy Principal, a poem read by two students, and a prayer from one of the parents. It was very humbling to see how such a poor community can be so appreciative.
“Thank you very much to Blue Sky Society Trust and Lion Match Group for the gift they have given to our children. It is very rare for us to receive gifts such as these. We are a very poor school and 50% of our children are orphans. Thank you very much, and our only wish is that one-day we can do as you have done to another school. Thank you for everything.” – Principle Simon Gugu Mqadi