January 25, 2016

Kind Soles Distributes Hundreds More Shoes to Region 9 in Guyana

On Friday 22nd January 2016, the Kind Soles team was off on yet another mission to distribute shoes; this time they journeyed to a town called Lethem in Region 9, Guyana. Lethem lies on the Takutu River, which forms the border with Brazil. The team was once more accompanied by the First Lady, Her Excellency, Mrs. Sandra Granger, as well as Honourable Minister of Social Cohesion, Miss Amna Ally and their respective teams.

On arriving at the airstrip in Lethem, the team was met by a group of students who serenaded them with sweet songs of welcome. They were then off to the Takatu Hotel where they were welcomed by students of the St. Ignatius Secondary School. After a quick breakfast break, the team was ready and raring to begin the day’s mission.

The first school visited by the Kind Soles team was the Arapaima Primary School. Three hundred and forty five children eagerly gathered to see what they would be receiving. Once the shoes were distributed, the children curiously tried them on, adjusting and readjusting the fasteners to get just the right fit. The children then skipped and frolicked through the sandy grounds, laughing and chatting with their friends about their new shoes.

Minister Amna Ally distributes shoes to students.

ReThink Ambassador and Project Happiness Coordinator, Amanda Fernandes, assists Minister Amna Ally in the distribution of The Shoe that Grows to students.

Next the team visited the Arapaima Nursery School, where the children gathered in anticipation. The looks on their faces said it all, “What could these people be bringing for us?” When asked if they would like to receive a pair of shoes, an enthusiastic “Yes!” was declared by all. Upon seeing the shoes that they would soon receive, smiles beamed across their faces. That day one hundred and fifty children from the Arapaima Nursery School walked away with brand new shoes on their feet and smiles on their faces.

Culvert City Nursery School was next on the agenda, although it was a very small school with just twenty seven students enrolled, there was no way they could be left out. This little school was so full of character. The tiny tots sure earned their shoes, they serenaded us with sweet songs and were even able to answer a bit of Guyanese trivia. The children wasted no time; upon receiving their shoes, they asked any adult in sight to help them put on their shoes so that they could test them out. One little boy was so grateful that he did not want us to leave, he showed his hospitality and gratitude by walking us out.

ReThink team with student in Lethem.

Marvin Imamshah, Ross Creative Director (l) and Project Happiness Coordinator, Amanda Fernandes (r) are all smiles with a young recipient of The Shoe that Grows.

After a quick break for lunch, the team resumed their mission. They visited the St. Igantius Secondary School (SISS) which has more than 700 pupils with a dormitory to accommodate 200 Amerindian students. Boys and girls of the SISS sang of the promising lives ahead of them. The lyrics “I am a promise, I am a possibility, I am a promise with a capital-P” echoed in the school hall. After brief remarks by Minister Ally, about their potential as young people, 250 pairs of shoes were distributed to these young people. You could see some of them intently examining the shoes and playing with the fasteners, whilst others wasted no time and rather got right into them, literally.

Although the team was not able to make it to all of the schools in Lethem, they did leave shoes in the caring hands of the Education District Officer for 200 students of the Howia Primary School, as well as 100 pairs for the St. Ignatius Nursery School.

Student poses with his brand new shoes.

What a successful day it was indeed, the Kind Soles team was able to touch the lives of over one thousand children. The mission has just begun, if you would like to get involved, please contact us today. One pair of shoes can impact a child lives in ways you wouldn’t believe.