Our 35 students at the Elimu Bora Primary School/Kiliba - in the volatile South Kivu region of eastern DR Congo - have minimal foot coverings, if any. Flip-flops are the norm. They step on debris, waste, and wade through standing water, all of which can cause harmful diseases. They need protection for their feet. This microproject will provide one pair of shoes (covering the feet) and two pairs of socks for each student.
Serious ailments are absorbed through the feet. Cracks can allow parasitic infections such as hookworm and threadworm to penetrate the skin. Other diseases come from the foot's exposure to standing water. The students' feet are prone to injury and disease.
With no income available to the students' single mothers (rape victims), a necessity as basic as a pair of shoes cannot be afforded--if they are available locally at all. Shoes will provide essential protection for the feet and provide a sense of caring from others beyond their community, which has no other source of support from anywhere in the world.
The education of these boys and girls - for as long as funding continues - allows them a start in breaking the cycle of poverty. Even the small kids realize that the path to a better life comes through education. As important as the rudimentary education that can be achieved by these impoverished schools is, getting communities to treat one another without discrimination regardless of circumstance is paramount in their need to recognize basic human rights.