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April 8th, 2010 | By Alicia Silverstone

Today, April 8th, is One Day Without Shoes, a Tom’s Shoes campaign. Tom’s is asking people to go the day, part of the day, or even a few minutes, without shoes, to see what it’s like to live without them and to help spread awareness of how one pair of shoes can change a child’s life.

I’m not saying that every single person needs to wear shoes. If someone doesn’t wear them it doesn’t necessarily mean they must have them. It’s sort of a rich man’s idea that you have to have shoes. It’s good for you to go barefoot at times too….but there are so many people in developing cities that are at risk for injuries by not wearing them, which is why Tom’s is doing this campaign.

Here are some facts from Tom’s about how, for many children, shoes are a necessity:
-In some developing nations, children must walk for miles to school, clean water and to seek medical help.
-Cuts and sores on feet can lead to serious infection.
-Often, children cannot attend school barefoot.
-In Ethiopia, approximately one million people are suffering from Podoconiosis, a debilitating and disfiguring disease caused by walking barefoot in volcanic soil.
-Podoconiosis is 100% preventable with basic foot hygiene and wearing shoes.

What you can do to help:

Join the conversation on Twitter, and tweet about how it feels to be barefoot, and add #hardwithoutshoes to your tweet
Find an event in your area where you can join with others for “Barefoot Walks”

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