Three Food-Industry Leaders Organize Put Foot Rally Crew to Give Shoes to African Children

Three food-industry leaders have organized a team to participate in the Put Foot Rally across southern Africa. The event raises money to provide underprivileged African school children with a pair of shoes. For many, it will be the first pair of shoes they’ve ever owned. The team is made up of three Americans:

  • Vernon Smith, a South African Ex-Pat, who moved to Arkansas and co-founded CAT Squared in 1995.
  • Mike Lindsey, senior director of manufacturing systems at Perdue Foods.
  • Robert Rust, IT consultant at Rose Acre Farms.

The Put Foot Rally is an epic road trip adventure where crews from around the world travel across five countries (South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Zambia and Malawi) in a wide variety of whacky vehicles, meet up at checkpoints located at the heart of each country and participate in hands-on charity work.

“Doing the Put Foot Rally has been on our bucket list for many years and we are now finally doing it,” said Smith. “What an incredible experience to be able to take part in an amazing event like this and at the same time raise funds for such a worthy charity.”

Smith grew up in South Africa and witnessed first-hand the poverty many experience in rural Africa. “Many kids go to school bare foot and others wear shoes that are broken or way too large or small for them,” added Smith.

The team has set up a donation page to provide children with shoes from


Team USA Put Foot Rally


Additionally, the team will match dollar-for-dollar all donations up to a total of $1,500.

Follow the team:

On Facebook: #PutFootTeamUSA

On Instagram: #PutFootTeamUSA


ABOUT CAT Squared: CAT Squared was founded in 1995 and is based in Conway, Arkansas, with a Latin American office in Celaya, Mexico. Our customers span 6 continents and include 60% of the top 50 meat and poultry companies in North America. CAT Squared specializes in innovative software solutions designed specifically for the food industry including beef, pork, chicken, turkey, seafood, produce, primary processing, and further processing plants. Learn more at

ABOUT Perdue Farms: Perdue Farms is dedicated to enhancing the quality of life for everyone touched through innovative food and agricultural products. The company has remained family-owned and operated since its beginnings on Arthur Perdue’s farm in 1920, through its expansion into Agribusiness, growing the Perdue Brand with Frank Perdue, and continuing with the third generation of leadership with Chairman Jim Perdue.   Perdue Farms, Inc. is the parent company of Perdue Foods and Perdue Agribusiness.  The companies include the Perdue, Harvestland, Coleman and Niman brands.    Perdue believes strongly in responsible foods and agriculture, agricultural stewardship, and corporate responsibility programs focused at becoming the most trusted name in food and agricultural products:

ABOUT Rose Acre Farms: As a leading egg producer in the United States, Rose Acre Farms believes that providing quality eggs and egg products and being a leader in animal welfare go hand in hand. Rose Acre Farms is a United Egg Producer (UEP) certified company, so our husbandry practices conform to rigorous standards designed to provide a high standard of living for all of our birds. In addition to standards set by UEP, the FDA, and other regulatory entities, Rose Acre Farms goes above and beyond minimum requirements to ensure the health and welfare of our flocks. From giving each bird proper handling and care throughout their life cycles, to staying at the forefront of scientific research on how to maximize a flock’s well-being, Rose Acre Farms is committed to producing high-quality eggs and egg products and leading the way in animal stewardship:

ABOUT Put Foot Rally: The Put Foot Rally supports a South African registered charity, the Put Foot Foundation, who provides young underprivileged school children pride, hope and dignity through the gift of a pair of brand-new, quality, 100% leather, school shoes. The Put Foot Rally is an epic African adventure that sees 80 teams take to the open roads of Southern Africa to experience the continent in its purest and wildest form. Crews may choose any vehicle and follow a route of their choice as they attempt to get around Southern Africa:

ABOUT the Charities: The Rally raises funds for two goals: 1) Providing young children in Africa with their first ever pair of school shoes and 2) Wildlife conservation of endangered animals: Rhino, Elephant, Lion, Leopard. Put Footers will personally deliver and fit the shoes at 3 schools, in South Africa, Namibia and Zambia on your behalf. The Put Foot Rally has also donated over $60,000 over the last 3 years to rhino conservation projects in South Africa, including Project Rhino and the Thula Thula Rhino Orphanage.

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