The club held a collection for this afternoon as well as a meet and greet opportunity with the squad. A huge thanks to everyone who attended and donated so generously to a great cause. There is a final chance to donate on Monday Night as Harps host Athlone Town, Kick Off 8pm.
Finn Harps have thrown their weight behind a national campaign to ship pre-loved sports shoes from Irish families to township children in South Africa.
The In My Shoes campaign is working with schools, sports clubs and families to collect several thousands of no longer needed boots for shipping to the needy townships.
Finn Harps shoe collection began on Friday night before their home game v Longford then continued on Saturday from 1pm to 3pm where supporters came to Finn Park and met some of the players and staff while dropping off their runners or football boots. There will be a final opportunity to donate to the charity on Monday night when Harps entertain Athlone. Drop off point for any donations will be at the club shop before the games.
Harps Social Responsibility Officer Stephen McNutt said: “We are delighted to be involved with this worthy cause and help Ciaran in the great work he is doing. Finn Harps will always be prepared to help out in the wider community in any way we can and this is a cause that every family can donate to.”
Sport shoes which are now too small for their original Irish owners and now being donated to the appeal, must be in decent condition and clean with no dirt on them
Meanwhile, thousands of miles away in Cape Town, Casey Prince, Executive Director of Ubuntu Football said: “We are so thankful and excited to work alongside the In My Shoes Programme and clubs in Ireland. These boots and trainers will benefit our ambitious young players tremendously.
“They all dream of playing for a club like Finn Harps one day, and quality boots will aid that process in making that dream a reality. In the process we have the opportunity to shape them into significant people that will help South Africa reach its full potential.”
In My Shoes was set up in 2019 after its now MD Sligo native Ciarán McHugh visited the Khayelitsha township in Cape Town, home to over a million people. There he saw the many hardships faced by children, including those playing football without boots.
In two pilot appeals 15,000 pairs of sports shoes were shipped to South Africa after the feet of their original owners in Ireland had outgrown them.
In My Shoes shipping partners UPS brought the welcome cargo to less fortunate kids in townships across Africa.
The appeal now has hundreds of schools nationwide registered to collect shoes, the aim being to gather tens of thousands of the gently worn boots and send them to underprivileged township children.
Appeal co-founder and MD Ciaran McHugh said: “Shoes are more than just foot protection in an African township, they can be the difference between a hopeful or bleak future.”
“We connect your acts of kindness with those most in need a world away so that everyone can have the gift of opportunity. I have never been involved in a project before where so many wanted to do so much for so little.”
To get involved with the In My Shoes campaign visit inmyshoescharity.org. The donation appeal runs until this coming Friday, 28th April. Schools are encouraged to register via the website.