I had a great day, although I stayed home in the morning since it was recommended by my school not to go on a field trip to St. Lawrence Market because I might not have been allowed inside barefoot. My first interview was with the CBC. It felt different since I was outdoors answering questions through a sound system from a journalist back in the studio. It was very nice outside and a great experience for me. A friend of mine, Luc Wise, later escorted me into the CBC studio and he got to see what happens behind the scenes. From there, I had another interview with a U.S. radio show.
Phil Lameira has been my official Barefoot Campaign photographer who has followed me around throughout the week. Thanks for Phil for his great pictures.
I actually had time to hang out with my friends from school for about an hour. We were at St. Lawrence Market and I was originally hesitant that I might get kicked out. But my parents were there with me, so I wasn’t too worried. I am happy to say that not a single person asked me to leave. I feel that people are generally very supportive, yet I find other people in positions of power and authority somewhat reluctant to think outside the box and make change.
I later had a meeting with Sergeant Shelly Rogers and Karen Richards of the York Regional Police. They would like to involve me in Peace Tree Day activities his on June 1. I’m looking forward to that. They also have an open house on May 9 which should be a lot of fun.
I also received some very nice support from a young woman in Germany. Julia wrote to me on Facebook and said the following: “I’ve read an article about you in the newspaper today and I’m really impressed what you already achieved! I think you show that everyone can help if he just tries. That’s really encouraging. Good luck for your future!” Thanks Julia. I think you’re very encouraging, too!
On another note, my favourite writer who is always so supportive of my efforts, Eric Walters, author of Bifocal and Boot Camp, had his grade school class go barefoot as well. Thanks for helping to spread the message, Eric! In addition, Vancouver-based Orca Books, the company that published my 2008 book, Making Change: Tips from an Underage Overachiever, went barefoot as well and sent me some pictures. Thanks to Dayle and everyone at Orca for their support!
My friends at AMREF Canada (the African Medical and Research Foundation in Canada) sent me pictures of the entire office going barefoot. I want to thank them so much for their support as well.
The public statement about my barefoot initiative presented at Queen’s Park on Wednesday by my MPP for Richmond Hill, Reza Moridi, is on You Tube. Check it out. Thanks again to Mr. Moridi for his support, and for going barefoot!
I also wrote an article on CBC Citizen Bytes which highlights my week without shoes. I think you’ll enjoy it.
But it’s not over yet. There’s still Saturday. It’s supposed to be very warm tomorrow in Toronto. It’s the perfect time to kick off those shoes and enjoy Spring. And remember, when people ask you why you don’t have shoes, remind them it’s because too many children in the world don’t either, along with other important necessities.
Speak to you tomorrow!
“Together We Can Make A Difference”