Shoe 4 Africa 10th year Anniversary party
On December 1st I hosted the 10 year anniversary party for Shoe 4 Africa at my home. I’ve been involved with S4A for over a decade and I also hosted the first inaugural party here in my home, so it was indeed sentimental.
Shoe 4 Africa has always been dear to my heart whether I was active or when I wasn’t because I was consumed with raising my girls and other life obligations. Shoe 4 Africa was always very important and meaningful to me.
I was very fortunate to have met Toby Tanser the founder, way back when I immersed in the NYC running circuit. As soon as Toby shared with me what shoe was about, I asked Toby to sign me up and was on board.
Shoe 4 Africa started in Nov 1995 with the initiative to collect shoes and send them to Africa to prevent disease ..
It all started when Toby was leaving Kenya, after a near seven-month stay running and living with the Kenyans,, he was at the airport and gave his last pair of dusty running shoes away to a needy taxi driver who wanted to start running in an attempt to change his life.
It became a contagious project and S4a was born to get shoes to the people who need them to help them start running and begin empowering their lives. The shoes would stop the Hookworm virus as people walk or stand barefoot in infected areas.
As more time was spent in Africa, so was the scope of what Toby believed could be achieved. Races for women were held which led to great empowerment. Women were shunned upon for running prior to the S4A races.
Thousands upon thousands of pairs of running shoes were given away after a person partook in a walk or run.
Years later the mission evolved and molded the charity into Health and Education. The shoe, that had been the beginning, became the symbolic step forward. With minimal funding it was miraculous to have achieved :
S4A built the first public children’s hospital (105-bed) in the whole of East & Central Africa and are full already!
And… 37,990 kids were successfully treated from Aug 12th 2015 to Nov3 2016 at the hospital!
The 10 year anniversary party was both a celebratory event of all that s4a has accomplished in these years and also initiating an exciting project. We hope to build a public Children’s Cancer hospital.
We believe this critical project is imperative since 9 out of 10 children diagnosed with Cancer in Kenya are tragically dying.
The event was a beautiful gathering of friends family and supporters of the S4a family.
It was an intimate setting where the guests can get to know one another and dine and mingle.
Toby made a wonderful speech educating the guests on what we’ve been up to and our latest initiative.
My daughter Sonia was the event planner and with her dedication she created a beautiful setting based on our theme.
An amazing flower installation created by Sallie Mishaan was also curated with the theme in mind.
The dinner was homemade with love and ingredients of ethnic cuisine.
Sonia sourced out beautiful and delicious desserts and I made homemade Vegan date balls.
The wonderful staff we hired were enthusiastic about helping out for a non profit organization.
There was a great energy and feeling in my home that night with the gathering of us wanting to give back in a cumulative effort.
Getting involved with a charity of your choice could be a great addition to the year ahead. Check out my post on The Benefits of Giving Back.