Can you imagine going shoeless all day?

That’s the question that motivates Jim Belshaw, Chair of Soles4Souls Canada. It’s also the motivation behind the first annual fundraiser “Barefoot on the Boardwalk,” a 2-km barefoot walk where participants collect pledges to get shoes on the feet of those in need. The walk begins at 1 p.m. on Saturday, July 19 at the Jubilee Bowl in Kelowna City Park.


“New stats from the World Health Organization say there are now 400 million children with no or very inadequate shoes,” says Belshaw. Those children aren’t all far away though. Many are here on the West Coast, and one of Soles4Souls Canada’s goals is to put good shoes on every person in B.C. that needs them.

It only takes a dollar to provide one pair of shoes. There is no minimum pledge, but Belshaw’s goal for each participant is 10 pledges at $10 each for 100 pairs of shoes. Registration for those collecting pledges is $20 per individual, or $100 for a team of six.

For more information and to register, visit, or go in person to Roy’s Shoes on Ellis, the Prospera Credit Union on Harvey Avenue or Lakeshore Road, or the Caribbean House of Food on Bernard Avenue.

Belshaw is also asking that all participants to decorate their feet or have one of the Travel to Haiti volunteers do that for you. The volunteers will be set up at 11 a.m. and painting feet right up until the start of the walk. There will be prizes for the most colourful feet, and for the most pledges collected.

The registration tent will be open at 11 a.m on Saturday, July 19. Pledges must be collected before the even begins, and cheques should be made out to Soles4Souls Canada.

Soles4Soles began in the U.S., and has been going for nine years now. The organization has distributed over 25 million pairs of shoes to contacts in 125 countries all over the world.