Bilaal’s ‘barefoot challenge’

barefootkidI heard about Bilaal Rajan on NPR news.  The 12-year-old Toronto schoolboy has been going without shoes this past week (volunteer week)  to raise public awareness of the plight of less privileged children the world over.

When he spread the word on his  ‘Barefoot challenge’,  using Facebook and other networking tools, friends as far afield as Thailand,  Australia, Thailand and Afghanistan pledged to shed their shoes in solidarity with Rajan’s ‘shoeless week’ (Apl.19-25)  to highlight the plight of children who have to go without shoes every day.

“My goal is to inspire one million children to take action and help create a more peaceful and caring world. I want kids to find their passion,  get involved and make a difference in the lives of others”, says Rajan,  who has been nominated official  Child Ambassador for UNICEF Canada.

Speaking of his experience of going barefoot in Toronto,  Rajan told NPR radio reporter that he got strange looks from folks at the mall  who may well be whispering at his back. Rajan said if only they asked him straight at his face why he went barefoot,  he could say, “because millions of others do”.

At 4, Rajan sold oranges door-to-door, raising money for victims of the 2001 earthquake in Gujarat. Since then, he has raised millions for various causes.  At 8, he founded Hands for Help, an organization dedicated to heightening awareness of children’s issues and fundraising for those in need.


3 Responses

  1. H seems to be a child prodigy in the field of social awareness.
    Kudos to him and his parents too !!!

  2. Simply wonderful

  3. What a wonderful child – in a world where adults fling shoes at others!

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