TOMS donates shoes to barefoot children in developing countries through its One for One program, which sends one new pair of TOMS to a needy kid for every pair customers purchase, but the company wants to take its movement one step further: encouraging supporters to spend a few minutes (or an entire day) barefoot. Nearly 1,000 walks (sans shoes) are planned in cities all over the world, including Dubai, London, Venice, and Washington, DC--all to give participants and idea of how it feels to step on every rock, pebble, crack, and scrape in the ground while performing basic tasks, like carrying water or getting food. In developing countries, the dangers go beyond achy feet, though: Many of the diseases found in soil can transmit through skin, spreading illness throughout entire populations. In Ethiopia alone, more than one million people have Podoconiosis, which spreads through volcanic soil and causes disfiguring and swelling of legs and feet.
To find or host a One Day Without Shoes event in your town, check out the TOMS schedule—and if you pledge to join the movement, the company will enter you to win a spot on an upcoming shoe drop, where you'll help deliver shoes to a participating community. Read more about the event in TOMS founder Blake Mycoskie's post on TreeHugger.