A Big Day, and a Big Year, in South Africa
“We want to live in a country where going to school, getting an education, and becoming the individual you are meant to be does not depend on whether or not you have shoes,” said Elanie Fourie, CEO, Samaritan’s Feet South Africa.
Samaritan’s Feet South Africa is an affiliate office of Samaritan’s Feet with the same vision, just targeted to their specific area: zero shoeless children in the country of South Africa. This year was one of their biggest yet, working hard towards that goal. In 2021, Samaritan’s Feet South Africa served a total of 17,124 children with new shoes and a message of hope.
“With each pair of shoes, we connect through positive physical and emotional touch. We want to convey a message of hope and that dreams can come true. It’s our vision to be part of a holistic solution to communities as we partner with organizations addressing other needs,” said Fourie.
One of the highlights for Samaritan’s Feet South Africa was their “Spring Gifting Day” which served 10,000 children, all in one day. Children, along with teachers, at Early Childhood Development (ECD) Centers across the Western Cape Province were in for a treat on September 1, the first day of Spring for South Africa.
“There were tears of joy! Tears of laughter! Tears of pain because children couldn’t understand why and how they were so fortunate to receive these shoes. And, volunteers were in tears and touched through the gift of giving,” said Fourie.
Around 200 “Good Samaritans” received training on how to host a shoe distribution at each ECD Center. This allowed the small two-person Samaritan’s Feet South Africa team to strategically enlarge the footprint of SFSA and empower others to do good. Additionally, teachers, community leaders, and local government representatives helped distribute the shoes.
Samaritan’s Feet South Africa also hosted a “Journey of Hope Project” which served 24 districts in the Western Cape with shoes, feminine hygiene products, and other items.
“We want to ensure students are equipped to attend school to receive the education they need, as well as fill their hearts with a message of love and hope,” said Fourie.
Samaritan’s Feet South Africa is just one affiliate office of the organization; other affiliate offices include Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Hong Kong, Nigeria, Peru, and Philippines.
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