Boy, 9, knows all about being a goody two shoes

2017-03-10 09:51
9 year old Dario Gouveia has collected over 2000 pairs of shoes for the poor and needy. His initiative is called Sole2Sole. (Iavan Pijoos, News24)

9 year old Dario Gouveia has collected over 2000 pairs of shoes for the poor and needy. His initiative is called Sole2Sole. (Iavan Pijoos, News24)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Johannesburg – He is just a normal nine-year-old who loves sport, but has touched the hearts of thousands with his shoe collection initiative.

Dario Gouveia says all he has ever wanted to do was to help the needy and poor.

He has collected 2 562 pairs of shoes, far exceeding his target of 1 000 pairs.

His Sole2Sole initiative started with a homeless child on a street.

"One day we stopped at a robot. I looked out of the window and saw a little boy, a little younger than me, sitting on the hot tar while his mother begged for money."

What worried him was that the boy was kicking stones with his bare feet.

"This made me think how many children out there need shoes."


Tremendous support

"I thought back to the amount of shoes I have in my cupboard that my mom keeps saying are too small for me."

When they got home, Dario and his sister went through his cupboard and took out 14 pairs of old shoes.

His mother, Zita Gouveia, says he was adamant that they return to the traffic lights and give the shoes to the child.

"I said to him that he needs to write a letter to his friends and see how many shoes he can collect for the needy. He wrote the initiative letter and posted it on social media and it skyrocketed. I can’t believe the generosity of some of the people," Gouveia says.

They have received tremendous support from schools.

"We have been everywhere. We have been to squatter camps, to children’s homes and to schools all over to deliver shoes to the needy," she says.


"It has been such an emotional rollercoaster. I cry a lot. He has been doing a lot of talks at schools lately and he speaks better from the heart than from a piece of paper," the mother of two says.

On Tuesday, a school at which Dario spoke collected 700 pairs of shoes.

"We were never expecting that, I couldn’t believe it. I looked at him, turned around and just started crying. I cried my eyes out."

Dario has urged South Africans to continue giving to the initiative.

"Please don’t stop donating, it has really been amazing. The poor people out there really need shoes, because winter is around the corner," Dario says.

He dreams of becoming a Proteas cricket player, and he is a huge fan of AB de Villiers.

- To donate, contact the initiative on Facebook or on email:

Read more on:    johannesburg  |  good news  |  charity

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Partner Content
What all investors should know about index investing

Index-linked investments are growing fast in popularity globally, and are growing in size and complexity too.

Partner Content
How data is changing investments

Technological disruption is rife in many spheres of business and given the quantity of data available, it’s no surprise that the way in which asset managers work is also changing fast.


Cute pet pictures can improve your relationship!

It’s true! A new study shows animal pics can bring back the spark.



7 weirdly awesome pets you can own
Pack theory: fact or fiction?
Perfect dog-walking 1: Why dogs pull on the lead
SA stats: The role of pets in families
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.