Thousands ditch footwear to raise funds

17 July, 2014   Kenneth Ho

5000 participants gather for a good cause at Bare Your Sole. Photo by Voxsports.

5000 participants gather for a good cause at Bare Your Sole. (Photos by Voxsports.)

A concerted effort by 5,000 participants in Bare Your Sole 2014, held on Saturday, July 12, saw $300,000 being raised for those in need.

Held at Gardens by the Bay, participants trek barefoot around the choice of either the 2.5km or 5km route and show their support for the Habitat for Humanity Singapore’s local programme Project HomeWorks.

Project HomeWorks helps elderly and people with special needs improve on their living conditions. The program also promises to provide voluntary services to improve hygiene and repair works in houses which were in dire need of them.

The event was graced by several of Habitat’s ambassadors, which includes former Nominated Member of Parliament, Eunice Olsen and actor Paul Foster.

Olsen stressed that events such as Bare Your Sole were essential in creating public’s awareness that adequate amenities may not be as widely available to some in Singapore.

“Without proper shelter, it creates problems and hygiene. Bare Your Sole kind of help reinforce the message that Habitat is trying to drive, that it is all about safety and hygiene,” she said. 

“This is really an important event by just being able to give a lot of people an opportunity to make a difference, which goes a long way.”

Participants agreed with Olsen’s assessment, and felt that this program was a good way of reminding themselves not to take things for granted while also providing a helping hand whenever possible.

Bare Your Sole 2014. Photo: Voxsports

“We get to walk around without shoes, and this helped us to get into the shoes of the poor so we can feel what it is like to lack the basic essentials,” Chow Hui Ming said.

Habitat for Humanity Singapore National Director Mr Yong Teck Meng was grateful for the support.  

“This year marks the sixth edition of Bare Your Sole, and it is heartening to see the community grow from strength to strength since its inception,” he said. 

“We are thankful to everyone who has contributed to Bare Your Sole and for making a difference in the lives of others.”

Watch highlights here: