Oklahoma City, OK 73105
For Immediate Release: April 16, 2009
Senators Andrew Rice and Steve Russell show their support of the
One Day Without Shoes campaign.
Senators Andrew Rice and Kenneth Corn talk to the media about
the problems facing children
in developing countries who don't have shoes.
Students from colleges around the state came to the Capitol to
awareness about the charity started by TOMS Shoes.
Senate Promotes "One Day Without Shoes"
Each day, millions of children around the world
contract serious infections and diseases because they have no
shoes. To help raise awareness of the problem, State Sen. Andrew
Rice authored Senate Resolution 43 Thursday declaring April
16, 2009 as "One Day Without Shoes" in the state and
asking Senate members and staff to participate in the world-wide
"It's sad that in this day and age there are countries with
such extreme poverty that people don't even have the basic necessity
of shoes to protect their feet. It's one of those things that
most Americans take for granted - just think how many pairs of
shoes are in our closets. We think of shoes as an accessory to
go with an outfit, not as a necessity," said Rice. "I
wanted to make my colleagues and other Oklahomans aware of this
issue and encourage them to get involved with charities such as
that ran by TOMS Shoes."
The "One Day Without Shoes" campaign was organized by
TOMS Shoes, which was founded by American Blake Mycoskie after
finding children in Argentina who had no shoes to protect their
feet. The company has a One for One philosophy in which for every
pair of shoes sold, the company donates a pair of shoes to a child
in a developing country who would not have access to shoes otherwise.
Since its creation, the company has given over 140,000 pairs of
shoes to children on four continents. The company plans to give
over 300,000 pairs this year.
"In some developing countries, children have to walk for
miles for food, clean water, and to seek medical aid. Since they
don't have shoes, they get cuts and sores on their feet that can
lead to serious infection and disease," said Rice. "Not
having shoes not only causes health problems, but social ones
as well because often times, these children aren't allowed to
attend school barefoot. All of these problems could be solved
with one pair of shoes and that's what we're trying to raise awareness
Rice went on to explain that in Ethiopia, approximately one million
people are suffering from Podoconiosis, a debilitating and disfiguring
disease caused by walking barefoot in volcanic soil. Wearing shoes
completely prevents the condition.
Rice was joined by a group of barefoot students from various colleges
including the University of Tulsa, Oklahoma Baptist University,
the University of Oklahoma Tulsa branch and Oklahoma Christian
University. Lauren Santore came from the University of Tulsa to
share her excitement about Tom's Shoes' One for One program and
One Day Without Shoes event.
"We take for granted the availability of shoes, and there
are a lot of kids in other countries who just don’t have
access and who suffer tremendously from that,” said Santore.
“I believe this is going to be really powerful for people
in Oklahoma who have never either heard of TOMS or the problems
that are happening in other countries because of the lack of shoes.”
Various schools around the state will be participating in the
One Day Without Shoes event including Bartlesville High School,
Gore High School, Southern Nazarene University, the University
of Central Oklahoma, the University of Oklahoma, Oklahoma State
University, Northeastern State University, Tulsa University, Oklahoma
Christian University, and Southwestern Oklahoma State University
To learn more about the TOMS Shoes One for One program, visit
For more information contact:
Sen. Rice's Office - 405-521-5610