There are an estimated 300 million barefeet children in the world. In many countries around the world you cannot go to school and access an often free education system if you do not own a pair of school shoes.
My name is CJ and I have a son called Sal. Three and a half years ago armed with a bag of his outgrown, but not outworn, shoes and unable to find a charity that could tell me where exactly in the world they would end up walking again if I donated them, I decided to cut out the middle man and send the shoes directly to some kids I knew in need. Quite unexpectedly I received back a photograph of a little boy on a hospital ward in Zambia wearing Sal's very first pair of shoes - Sal’s pair of shoes had become those of another.
I started collecting more pre-loved children’s shoes from family and friends and by harnessing social media for a good cause, word spread and soon I was inundated with pairs of barely worn shoes; the charity Sal’s Shoes had been born.
We have now collected over 190,000 pairs of pre-loved children's shoes and found them new feet in 35 countries around the world including in the UK. Sal's Shoes are now walking again in rural and urban areas, in orphanages and hospitals, in refugee camps and schools. Pre-played in football boots are back on the pitch on the feet of children who may otherwise only ever dream of owning a pair.