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We Have To Do Something About This

29 04 2008

Lemuel, my nephew, who intends to be a medical doctor and a professional photographer with his Nikon Digital Camera, is a regular participant in weekly road races in Metro Manila, not as a runner, but a photographer. Knowing that I am actively involved in the Project Donate A Shoe to help other runners, he took some pictures of kids/children who participated in the 3K Fun Run during the 4th Bonifacio Global City/ANTA Run last 20 April 2008 at the Bonifacio High Street, The Fort.

I am posting some of the pictures taken by Lemuel as a reminder that something has to be done to help and develop these kids to their fullest potentials as runners and athletes in the future. I think our government’s sports program should start with these kids and through running. From these kids who are exposed to physical activity like running/jogging, we can develop our future boxers, basketball players, soccer players, cyclists, volleyball players, tennins players, and other sports you can think of. Let us help these kids!

You are looking at kids joining a 3K Fun Run during the 4th Bonifacio Global City Run last 20 April 2008 at The Fort. They were not wearing any running shoes.

Despite having a handicap of not having a running shoes, you can still see on the faces of these kids their desire to compete and finish the race.

Another group of “barefoot kid runners” about to reach the finish line of the 3K Fun Run. These kids have the “running form” and determination to finish the race but they lack the very basic necessity for a runner, a running shoes, that would protect their feet from the ground.

Look at the contrasting sight of runners, “old” runners with comfortable running shoes and very young runners without any running shoes!

Our country is not a part of Africa or considered as a poor country where most of the people are not wearing any shoes. These pictures showing kids running without any shoes shows the ignorance, lack of guidance and support from the parents. However, we can not blame much on the parents if they could not afford to buy their kids the necessary equipment for running even if their kids are gifted with the natural-born talent to run and excel in it. Who is to be blamed on this? The parents? the government and its sports program? the schools? the private corporate world? the politicians? the local government officials administering them in their places of residence? the non-government organizations? or us who just pretend that we did not see such reality in our midst and ignore the problem and do nothing about it.

I have started the Project Donate A Shoe where runners could donate their old shoes to the less-privileged runners who run with “old, tattered, and worn-out” running shoes and it is becoming a very successful “advocacy”. However, Project Shoes For Kids is entirely different as the only way to help these kids is to buy a new pair of running shoes fitted for them. However, if there are old shoes in the lockers and storage rooms of families with kids who have grown up, such shoes will be a good option for these “barefoot kids”.

Let us help these “barefoot running kids” and inspire them to love sports and running.

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