I normally use my blog as a way of keeping in touch with friends, family and loyal followers, usually sharing my crafty ideas. Sometimes I use it as a way of advertising my classes and sometimes I share holiday photos and family events. I have to admit that I don't post on my blog as often as I used to but that is simply because I have been doing other things and today I would like to share one of those things with you.
My daughter Kelly has been supporting a local charity called Supershoes for a couple of years. Basically, she is the person behind their social media and has spent a lot of time working on their new website. She told me all about their fabulous work and I couldn't help but volunteer my services to help Sarah, the founder of Supershoes, behind the scenes in their very busy office.
Supershoes started in Oct 2013 when Sarah read about Henry Allen - a little boy from Milton Keynes who had neuroblastoma and he received the very 1st pair of Supershoes. Kelly helped Sarah to set up a Facebook page and it has snowballed from there.
Supershoes became a registered charity in August 2015 and there are now over 130 artists, 10 volunteers and 4 trustees who all work on a voluntary basis to try and brighten the day of a child suffering from cancer. Supershoes has now produced over 850 pairs of hand painted shoes for 850 very poorly children. A pair of Supershoes will not change the fact that a child has cancer, but they will certainly brighten the day of a child who is undergoing treatment to try to beat this dreadful illness.
I spend every Tuesday in the office dealing with all the new referrals that come in via the hospitals around the country who are treating these very brave children. A few months ago, when I first started in the office, we were receiving 6-8 referrals a week. Now, each week, I see 20+ referrals and it breaks my heart to think that so many children are suffering. Each child has a different story to tell but they are all equally upsetting.
It costs around £50 to produce each pair of custom painted shoes. This covers the purchase of the shoes, paint and postage. Fund raising comes from a variety of sources, it could be local businesses who kindly want to help support a local charity. Friends and families of some of the artists and volunteers organise fund raising events. Families of children who have previously received a pair of Supershoes know what a difference it can make to a child and have funded shoes for other children. Some of those parents fund shoes in memory of their child who sadly didn't survive.
As I said before, I don't normally use my blog for anything other than my own personal posts but today I would love it, if you would take a moment out of your busy day to click here and take a look at the Supershoes website. Please tell your friends and family too, raising awareness is crucial and if you feel you could spare a few £££'s to bring a smile to the face of a very poorly child, there is a donate button on the website.
Sadly, not every child survives and for the families of those who do not make it, these shoes become a very special and cherished memento. I'll leave you with a few photos of some of the amazing shoes painted by some super artists who generously give up their time, to brighten a child's day.
Thanks for reading to the very end.