First Annual International Red Sneakers Day Celebrated Around the World

Global Awareness of the Dangers of Food Allergies With a Reach of More Than 2.5 Million People

 International Red Sneakers Day

Red Sneakers for Oakley presented the ground-breaking results of the first annual International Red Sneakers Day, which spurred people all over the world to put on red sneakers and raise awareness about food allergies.

Capitalizing on Food Allergy Awareness Month, celebrated during the month of May, Red Sneakers for Oakley succeeded in accelerating the growth of their movement and strengthening their message about the dangers of food allergies on International Red Sneakers Day. The day serves as a platform for the simple, yet vivid, symbol of red sneakers to be leveraged to underscore the magnitude of the problems facing people with food allergies all over the world. 

Supporters across multiple continents participated in the day by wearing their red sneakers, sending messages of support and posting photos on the internet. Messages were received from as far away as Russia, Japan, South Africa and Guam, and photos were posted on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter using the hashtag #internationalredsneakersday. The hashtag trended widely on May 20, with unique posts, reposts and shares achieving an astounding reach of more than 2.5 million people*.

Red Sneakers for Oakley celebrated the conclusion of the inaugural International Red Sneakers Day at Meat Market in Palm Beach. The event also served to raise awareness about the danger of food allergies, and the efforts of the Red Sneakers for Oakley non-profit organization. 

At the evening event at Meat Market, a wall of supporter messages was displayed against a backdrop of images from Red Sneakers for Oakley school events and sports teams wearing red in support of the organization. More than 100 supporters from Palm Beach attended the event wearing red sneakers. 

Host Merrill Debbs spoke of the organization’s efforts to expand their reach even further through alliances with other prominent food allergy organizations such as Food Allergy Research and Education (FARE), Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Connection Team (FAACT), End Allergies Together (EAT), and more. “Our goal is to work together, leveraging our different networks and unique constituencies to build a stronger front to keep people safe from fatal food allergy-reactions known as anaphylaxis,” said Debbs. 

Between 220 and 250 million people worldwide have food allergies. One in 12 children in the U.S. has a doctor-diagnosed food allergy, which translates to two children in every classroom. Every two minutes, someone goes to the Emergency Room due to food allergy-induced anaphylaxis.*

For more information, please visit or email Photos available upon request.






Hashtags: #redsneakersforoakley #livlikeoaks #foodallergyawareness #internationalredsneakersday

Red Sneakers for Oakley is a Florida-based 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to raising awareness of the dangers of food allergies founded by Merrill and Robert Debbs after they tragically lost their 11-year-old son Oakley due to a severe reaction to nuts.

*Hashtag tracking analytics provided by

*Source: End Allergies Together/Sean N. Parker Center for Allergy & Asthma Research

Source: Red Sneakers for Oakley


Categories: Non Profit, Active and Healthy Living

Tags: anaphylaxis, epinephrine, food allergy, oakley, red sneakers, safety, sneakers

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About Red Sneakers for Oakley

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Red Sneakers for Oakley is a non profit organization dedicated to raising awareness about the dangers of food allergies

Ryanmarie Tover
Executive Director, Red Sneakers for Oakley
Red Sneakers for Oakley
P.O. Box 2687
Palm Beach, FL 33480
United States