Many members may already know of Footscape, an Australian charity that assists disadvantaged individuals and communities predisposed to debilitating foot pathology. We have invited its founder and Chief Executive Officer, Anthony Lewis, to share more about the workings of Footscape. Each month Anthony will share Footscape’s recent experiences against the broader backdrop of foot health issues that affect people who experience disadvantage.

I am thrilled to have a regular space in STRIDE this year to hopefully bring to life the work we do at Footscape, as well as shine a light on some of the more systemic issues that affect disadvantaged people and their foot health


Who we are

Firstly, to introduce Footscape. We work across a range of projects that all share one common denominator: to help support the foot health of people experiencing disadvantage.


Our projects range from providing materials to podiatrists who work in community health centres to treat people who experience disadvantage, providing pro bono podiatry services to asylum seekers, creating a platform for funding children’s orthotics and much more.


This month’s focus: where it all begins

To start this series off with something perhaps more tangible, our Podiatry Material Aid Centre continues to grow from its humble 2013 start in my spare bedroom, to leasing and transforming a community hall through the addition of new furniture and fixtures thanks to a range of small grants.


It is understood that our Podiatry Material Aid Centre is the largest of its kind in Australia, which has facilitated a record distribution of footwear and socks to homeless and other disadvantaged persons through the ‘Shoe It Forward’ and ‘Sock It To ‘Em’ projects.


What does this mean for us and the people we help? This space gives our volunteers an organised place to store and process material aid items. These items are then used to treat our clients who experience disadvantage and without this ‘home’ we would not have the ability to enact the change we do.


What is material aid?

So, what exactly is ‘material aid’? It really is any foot-related item that a person needs who is experiencing disadvantage which impacts on their foot health.  This includes new socks, new footwear and foot care kits for clinical needs.


Get involved

In fact, if you are a podiatrist within an Australian primary and community health organisation you can jump online to request these materials on behalf of your clients. We’ll review all requests and respond within two business days.


We are also developing our human resources, with the announcement of our governing committee members on our website. These people share a passion to implement the Footscape mission and promote foot health equity for all.


If you would like to be involved in any of our initiatives or to become a member of our charity, please complete the membership application form.


I look forward to sharing further updates with you as the month’s pass, and I hope you can stick with me for the journey ahead.


Charity Focus

Footscape: behind the scenes

Anthony Lewis
By Anthony Lewis
CEO, Footscape
Since completing his Bachelor of Podiatry at La Trobe University in 2000 Anthony Lewis has worked in a range of Australian healthcare settings serving marginalised population groups predisposed to foot pathology. His passion for working with disadvantaged communities deepened during four respective volunteer experiences abroad in India, Samoa, Kiribati and Nauru. Observing first-hand the startling implications of debilitating foot pathology upon the most vulnerable has motivated Anthony to establish Footscape and systemically alleviate this increasing burden. Anthony has completed further post graduate studies extending to a Master of Public Health at Flinders University and Graduate Certificate in Wound Care at Monash University.