ChildFund New Zealand and a host of well-known Kiwi dads are asking fathers around the country to bare their ‘souls’ and soles to help children in developing countries this Father’s Day, by asking them to go barefoot.

The call is attracting the support of a line-up of celebrated Kiwi fathers from around the country, including Paul Ego, Tim Shadbolt, Simon Shepherd, Jesse Mulligan, Simon Barnett, and Gary McCormick, each of whom has committed to going barefoot at work to mark Father’s Day.

The purpose is to join an online campaign in which ChildFund is encouraging Kiwis to gift a pair of essential shoes and socks to a child in need this Father’s Day.

ChildFund New Zealand CEO Paul Brown says shoes and socks are luxury items for many children in developing countries, and at just $23 can provide a truly meaningful gift for Dad this Father’s Day.

“In Africa it is common for children to walk an average of four hours each day to and from school, in blistering heat or freezing cold with no protection on their feet from nasties."

ChildFund New Zealand is ‘walking the talk’ themselves with local staff and off-shore team members supporting the campaign by going barefoot for a day on August 23rd.

“We want to have some fun with this in the lead up to Father’s Day,” Paul Brown says. “Baring our ‘souls’ is one way of doing that, and we’re asking others to put their best feet forward with a photo of their bare feet online, fully named and accountable!”

Photo contributors can also post an anecdote of a ‘soul-baring’ moment to their children where words of fatherly advice have not gone quite the way they’d hoped. Paul Brown said, “As a dad myself I know we all have moments where we bare our souls to our children with precious words of advice, only to have them taken all-too literally, or ignored completely. These are the times I wish they could walk in my shoes for a day!”

‘Bare feet’ photos and corresponding stories will be shared online in the lead up to Father’s Day via ChildFund New Zealand’s Facebook page,

Join well-known Kiwi dads in supporting ChildFund New Zealand this Father’s Day by donating $23 to gift a pair of shoes and socks via ChildFund's Gifts that Grow catalogue.

Spread the world

Share this story with your friends

More stories

View story archived for more