Artist Daniel Mazzone donates 100 pairs of shoes and auctions off one-of-a-kind Nike shoes to help youth transitioning out of government care

Online auction starts on March 15 World Shoe Day at

(TORONTO – March 14, 2023) Toronto artist Daniel Mazzone, together with Drip Toronto, is donating 100 pairs of Nike Air Force 1s that he has individually painted to Children’s Aid Foundation of Canada. Ninety pairs will be donated to youth transitioning out of government care, while 10 pairs of shoes will be auctioned off at to raise funds for Children’s Aid Foundation of Canada. The online auction runs from March 15 to 31, 2023, kicking off on World Shoe Day, a day that raises awareness of the need for quality footwear for millions of people worldwide who can’t afford or don’t have access to it. Funds raised through the auction will go to improving the lives of youth transitioning out of government care.

“Having been homeless in my youth, I’ve been in the shoes of those who don’t have a permanent support system,” said Daniel Mazzone. “Knowing that youth leaving government care are 200 times more likely to experience homelessness than their peers, I wanted to create these shoes for them and to help raise funds for Children’s Aid Foundation of Canada. I hope that by giving youth a good pair of shoes, we can help them start out on the right foot and provide them with a small step towards a brighter future.”

Every year in Canada, thousands of youth transition out of government care at the age of 18 or 19. Unlike their peers who continue to receive support from their families, youth are no longer eligible for the type of support they received while living in foster care or group homes. Youth must establish their lives after care without the support of a family, without stable employment and often without an education. Through donations, Children’s Aid Foundation of Canada funds several programs that help youth in transition gain the skills, networks and resources they need to move beyond just surviving to thriving. 

“As someone who left the child welfare system, I know how daunting it can be to navigate life without support. It’s great to see someone donating shoes to Children’s Aid Foundation of Canada to help young people in transition. It means there are people out there who are willing to help,” says Jenny, a youth with lived experience. “A good pair of shoes is a symbol of stability, reminding me of comfort in chaotic and unpredictable environments. Despite the lack of support and structure growing up, kids leaving care have so much potential. With support and guidance, we can achieve great things.”

About Daniel Mazzone

Known for his contemporary mosaic portraits, Daniel Mazzone has been referred to by many as ‘the next Andy Warhol’. His mother was an art instructor and Daniel became particularly interested in composition and production of stained glass at a young age. The youthful exploration of his artistic talents were pushed aside when he became homeless at age 15. Once he was able to get back on his feet, Daniel pushed himself to explore his true passions and in 2015 made his official debut at Art Basel in Miami, selling out his entire collection. 

About Children’s Aid Foundation of Canada

Children’s Aid Foundation of Canada is our country’s leading charity dedicated to standing up for children and families involved in the child welfare system and standing alongside youth with lived experience. We raise and grant funds and deliver a wide range of high-impact programs and services in partnership with 80 child- and youth-serving agencies across the country. Last year, we supported over 19,568 children, youth, and families. Find out more at


For more information:

Lisa Lipkin

Children’s Aid Foundation of Canada

[email protected] ; 416-988-4189