Heart & Soul 2017

On 21 May, members from the Interfaith Group on Domestic Abuse set up a stall at the Church of Scotland annual festival, Heart & Soul. The festival had a feature article in the Church’s magazine and below is the portion featuring the author’s experience and reflection of the IfGoDA tent:

‘My first port of call was to the Interfaith Group on Domestic Abuse tent with their display of shoes and the stories attached to them, at the foot (see what I did there) of the avenue. Janette Henderson was manning the tent from The United Church of Bute. This year many more stories were represented by pairs of shoes because although there were a fair few pairs on show, many more were in photographs around the walls of the tent.
“We used to have to carry lots and lots of pairs of shoes,” Janette explained. “But then someone had the genius idea of photographing them all with their stories, and now we can show many more of them at times like this. Of course the full exhibition is available – along with the shoes – to church groups or any other organisations that would like to have it. It’s very sobering and thought-provoking.”
It’s one of the displays that always touches me. I have a fair few pairs of shoes myself (ok, I have LOTS of pairs of shoes, much to Mr M’s despair…) and so I guess I look at these shoes with something of a connoisseur’s eye. I can see the hopes and dreams wound up in these shoes, some worn and battered, some pretty and flimsy, some wildly impractical. It’s an exhibition that always saddens me and yet, the fact that they’re there, on show, displaying the fact that their owner “escaped” is full of a cautious optimism for the future.’ – Jackie Macadam


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