Toby's Blog

Caroline & Jason - Shoe getters, school class builders, kid sponsor!

Back a couple of years ago Caroline & Jason Palmer Myers came to Iten, stayed, and left a mark -- they contributed to build a classroom in a far off public school, near Tinderet, Nandi County.

They enjoyed Kenya but wanted to give back - it was really appreciated! But the help did not stop there - next they stepped up to agree to help a young school girl so she can be assured when she reaches the correct age she will get a paid for secondary school education, and they sent sports equipment for her too...

AND, last not least, they did a school drive for shoes and they have arrived in Nairobi I hear! Thank you so much - you are changemakers! (Image to come when the Internet is strong enough to upload!)

The Awesome Katherine Miller

Many thanks to the awesome Katherine Miller - she's running for us next month in the NYC half marathon and she has already raised $1600 for Shoe4Africa.  So far our top fund raiser for the Half

Here is her message: "Hi friends! I am thrilled to be running the NYC Half Marathon on March 15, 2015 with Team Shoe4Africa. Having visited Kenya and Tanzania in the summer of 2013, I have seen firsthand the tremendous need of the people of East Africa. Disease and poverty are widespread and there is a devastting lack of both healthcare and educational resources. Since I am not sure when I will have the opportunity to get back to Africa, I have been hoping to find a way to GIVE back and thus I was thrilled to come across Shoe4Africa.

Founded by runner & philanthropist Toby Tanser in 1995, Shoe4Africa is an organization devoted to bettering the lives of East African people, especially women & children. What began as a project to provide shoes for athletes in Kenya has become a massive effort to develop health & education infrastructure in all of Sub-Saharan Africa.

Currently Shoe4Africa is in the process of building the first ever public teaching children's hospital in all of East Africa. By providing healthcare to children and training to adults, the hospital will create a strong foundation of health and self-sufficiency and will pave the way for a future where child mortality is the exception rather than the rule.
If you should wish to give her a push then please go to our sponsor an athlete page... in the meantime - Katherine, you rock!

New Private Clinic in Eldoret Opens today

Today in Eldoret I went to a function for the opening of a new private clinic.  It is in the center of town and the Governor, plus the neighboring Governor, plus the Deputies, Senators, Speaker of the House, MP's for Moiben and for Kapsaret - many, many people coming for the Mediheal Town Clinic opening - Eldoret health is really getting good focus.  Plus all the business peeps of Eldoret came to attend.  I was there with Dr. Kibosia of the MTRH and after we were invited for a lunch at the Eldoret Club.  We had a police escort as the whole town was closed down and we went zooming along through the closed down streets (very nice) but I hear there was a gridlock for hours after as cars from all sides jammed the roads.

I also got to see a number of Kenya's town performers who came for the event, at the picture below it was Israel singing Young man.  This project is the brainchild of Dr. Mishra, who came to Eldoret in 1997 from India and has made his fortune through business with healthcare - a remarkable story of success.  Soon it will be the Shoe4Africa opening!


Meet Justin Reid, thanks to Smokin J

A while back in NYC I was part of a running team called the Fat Tuesday's.  We actually remain undefeated in Team races, raced sparingly and never lost.  Like a cowboy movie our characters were... interesting.  Like, meet, Smokin J -- the title of this photo he posted on his FB pace was the International Man of Inaction.  However, below the picture is his Team Bio.

Anyway, the reason why I am writing about Smoking is that he has Very Kindly agreed to help a girl who thought she had no chance of getting a proper education.  Smokin stepped in and is giving her a fully paid FOUR year education!  Her name is Melvine Katonde of Nandi Hills.

"Since arriving in NYC in the mid-nineties, when the young (then) Northern Irish runner began running to improve (well start) his Big Apple social life, Smokin has been a fixture at the sharp end of the NYC racing circuit. Running was the core of Smokin's leisure time, he worked at Two Boots Pizza Joint (the home of Urban Athletics for the fall of 2000). Apart from becoming a pizza connoisseur Smokin's talents re-emerged as a local running star. Back in Europe Smokin' had been a top notch runner reaching the level where one dons one's country's outfit and all that.
A claim to fame; Princess Diana, Prince Charles, Philip, and Andrew, the Queen Mother, and countless others have sat in the back seat when Smokin' has been driving. Has ties with the British aristocracy!"

What was Smokin' J's reply to this very timely post (Okay, almost timely as today is Shrove Wednesday)?  He said three words,

"I have departed."  

Two more students - thanks to the Italian connection!

Meet Joel Kipchoge and meet Rebecca Cherop!

Thanks to a great supporting effort of Claudio Berardelli who coaches in Kenya every hour god sends seven days a week, when he goes back to Italy for his Christmas break he does not forget the Kenyan kids... nope!  Not at all.  Instead he bugs his friends, fund raises and continues to support and has (again) come and found four year scholarship money to put Joel Kipchoge and Rebecca Cherop through secondary school education!  Thanks Claudio!

Yale University Team U fund raiser

Thanks so much to Yale Team U who are going to be running the Central Park Half marathon on Feb. 22nd to raise money for Shoe4Africa.  Founded by Joe in Princeton and led by Michaella, Ian, and Stephanie at Yale they are doing amazingly well and have been showing stamina with hanging in for the long run as this is not the first year.  We are super grateful!

Three groovy interior building shots

I am most often looking from the outside in but these show what is going on in the inside.  The finishings are now taking place, the plaster is getting smoothed down.  The paint is being layered and all is looking good for a Summer opening.  We will be announcing the date very shortly as work progresses.

Shoe4Africa Martin Lel School.... after four years

The Shoe4Africa Martin Lel school - checking by and was glad to see the place is looking great.

Andrea Mascaro - running for us!

She came to Kenya, helped teach and change the lives of the bright scholars who made the Kensap program, now she is running for TEAM SHOE4AFRICA on March 15th at the United Airlines 1/2 marathon.

Thanks so much Andrea - for making the difference;

Thanks McNeese!

I found out via the Internet, on twitter - thank goodness people tag these days @shoe4africa.  Many thanks to McNeese for doing a Shoe collection and sending shoes over to Kenya.

LAKE CHARLES – The McNeese track and field team shipped off over 200 pairs of shoes on Monday en route to Africa as part of the program's donation to the Shoe4Africa charity.
"This puts an end to our community service for 2014," said head coach Brendon Gilroy. "IN the spirit of the Christmas season, it's good when you assist someone less fortunate. The kids (student-athletes) and community did an awesome job supporting this worthy cause. It's amazing when something so small like a pair of shoes can mean so much to someone else."
McNeese began collecting shoes at the squad's annual year-end Blue and Gold Scrimmage in November and has been collecting ever since.
Shoe4Africa is an organization that works with communities in Africa to better lives focusing on health and education. It helps raise awareness by building teams from around the world to support the cause while helping give an opportunity to those in need in Africa, especially children where one in every eight children die from preventable and treatable diseases.
McNeese assistant coach, Joshua Sawe, a native of Eldoret, Kenya, Africa, approached Gilroy about the opportunity to get involved to help those in need in his native Continent.
"It's been a blessing to be able to help out in any way we can," said Gilroy.

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