Running Barefoot for the Children
As important as it is to reduce our eco-footprints, we sometimes forget that many people around the world live in poverty and are unable to afford things we consider basic necessities, like shoes. Children in developing countries often grow up barefoot, making them susceptible to contracting diseases through cuts and sores from contaminated soil and water. One environmentalist is hoping to draw attention to this plaguing issue in a unique way: He's running a marathon barefoot.
Casey Cochran, CEO and founder of the Green Guide Network, will be running the Santa Barbara Marathon on Dec. 6 shoeless in support of Toms Shoes, a company that provides shoes to children in need. Cochran, who enjoys finding creative, economical ways to live green (he saves gallons of water by not wearing socks!), hopes to raise enough money to send 1,000 pairs of shoes. To read about how he's preparing for the challenge, visit his barefoot blog.
There are two ways to get involved: First, you can purchase a pair of shoes for yourself or a friend; with every purchase, Toms donates a pair to children. Second, you can donate to the Friends of Toms, a nonprofit dedicated to eradicating podoconiosis, a disease that plagues those who walk barefoot in silica-rich soil but is completely preventable by shoes. Just enter “Casey Cochran” in the “in honor of” field on the donation page so he can keep track.