Take a look in any woman’s closet and count the pairs of shoes she owns. Most women have not only a passion for fashion, but also a shoe fetish (myself included…take me to Macy’s and I make a beeline for the shoe department). What can I say? New shoes can transform an outfit, an attitude, even a bad day. And thus, women go crazy for shoes. However, never have I encountered such emotion regarding shoes as I did last week.
Recently, a group from North Carolina came to visit Congo Initiative. One of the visitors noticed that many of the children at the Women’s Center were barefoot. With a crisp twenty-dollar bill, she commissioned us to purchase shoes for the children. So last week, Meredith and I spent a morning at the market negotiating with a shoe salesman. Eventually we walked away with 20 pairs of brightly colored sandals in various sizes and styles. As we left, we prayed that somehow, someway, we had an adequate amount and the correct sizes to outfit all the children.
When we arrived at the center, the children’s teacher paraded them outside as we lined up the new sandals on the porch. One-by-one, the children were called forward to select sandals. Honestly, I cannot ever remember such excitement upon receiving new shoes. Here are some photos documenting the occasion: