For the past five years, a Colorado man has gone barefoot—over rocks, snow, grass, dirt, and concrete. The strangest looks he gets are when he’s indoors.
Why? On July 19, 2010, Jeff Brodsky was handing out food to poor children in Siem Reap, Cambodia. He was a travelling clown and charity worker, on a search to find and serve the “least of these,” a term Jesus Christ used when He took children onto his lap in Palestine. As Brodsky was serving these children, he noticed that not one of them had a pair of shoes. That night, he couldn’t get the image out of his mind. He felt a divine calling to go without shoes for a year, to stand united with these children.
As people have gaped and gawked, Brodsky has been able to share the plight of these children. Jeff’s ministry to “the least of these” has narrowed more specifically to the children of parents who are so poor that they sell their daughters into sex slavery.
Brodsky started JOY International, which is now one of the foremost organizations rescuing child sex slaves and restoring them into a healthy environment.
To date, JOY International has rescued over 700 children from some of the worst crimes that can be committed against children. JOY International takes care of the children through the entire process: finding the children, working with the local law enforcement to rescue the children and jail the perpetrators, then providing rehabilitation centers so the children can safely heal and receive an education.
How are the donations used? “When JOY receives donations, children are rescued,” Jeff Brodsky, the founder of JOY International told interviewers in February. Brodsky’s shoeless witness raises awareness for the many atrocities that happen daily against these children. Often he will walk into a building and have to answer a multitude of questions. His answers often bring people to tears.
Reformation Church of Elizabeth Colorado is hosting the Barefoot Mile Walk/Run Fundraiser on May 23, 2015 in Castle Rock, CO to raise vital funding for JOY’s rescue operations.
The Barefoot Mile provides the opportunity to walk a mile in bare feet to show the daily suffering of children all over the world. The one mile walk/run will take place in downtown Castle Rock, beginning at Mieneke Auto Care, at 8 Wilcox Street.
Participants can register at www.CastlerockBarefootMile.com and collect sponsorships for their run/walk. T-Shirts are available for a donation of $15, though participants can walk the Barefoot Mile for a donation of any amount.
The Barefoot Mile Walk/Run is currently collecting sponsorships from small businesses. Sponsors may contact castlerockbarefootmile [at] gmail.com to support the race and to receive a race logo to display on their storefront window or website.