You may have found yourself in a situation where almost all your shoes no longer look good enough. It could be that they have slightly faded from frequent use, or they suddenly look dull and boring. You may have realized that even your favorite pair has expanded a size up and doesn’t fit right. This is normal for any type of shoe; be it designer type or not. Over time, shoes age and lose the desirability they once had. It is quite disappointing to realize that there is no single pair of shoes that fits well or going well with your attire. At that particular moment, out of frustration, your first instinct would be to clear out your shoe rack. Then put them in the dumpster. But why not donate them to a shoe drive?
Before you toss them away, think of how you can give them a new lease of life. Donate to a good cause. Not all shoes that are useless to you now are meant to go to the bin. Most of them may be in a good condition that someone else would appreciate. There are groups of people worldwide who cannot afford to buy shoes due to poverty and economic marginalization. The following are good options of what you can do with your old shoes:
Participate In A Shoe Drive
A shoe drive is a good way to raise funds to buy shoes for a group of people. It’s good to mobilize shoe donations for the same. If all you have is old shoes that someone else can wear, then you can participate in a shoe drive donation. You can find out from friends or people in your community if there are any shoe drive initiatives that you could participate in. To maximize success for the initiative, you should collectively set goals, identify the right time and communicate your cause diligently. The activity will have more impact if you pull resources together and contribute enough pairs to help the targeted people.
Support Charities That Donate Used Shoes
You may have outgrown your shoes, considered them useless and not appealing anymore; but they are still in perfect condition. The first thing to consider in this case is donating directly to groups that need them. However, there are times you may not know how to go about it, so you could support charities with shoes. There are several charity organizations you can find within your location, through churches, or online. Charities such as soles 4 souls, Planet Aid, Share your soles, Pick-up-Please, and much more work with vulnerable groups. You can work with either of them whenever they have a shoe drive or support them by sending your shoes whenever you are clearing out.
Recycle Your Old Shoes
If you cannot manage to find donation options near you or be part of a shoe drive, you could always recycle. Not only is it beneficial to the environment, but it will go a long way in helping the shoe-less. There are shoe recycling programs such as TerraCycle, Nike Reuse-A-Shoe program, Asics, I: CO, and others that have drop-off points. These programs have stores where you can drop off your old shoes; accessible either physically or online with shipping options. Most of the shoes no longer in use are components from them such as soles and laces. These parts are then combined with other materials to make cheaper shoes that go to vulnerable groups in the communities through charities.
Alternatively, you can get your local shoe cobbler to polish, resole or re-do stitches to damaged shoes. You will be surprised at the transformation that can happen to your old shoes; making them wearable by someone else.
Set Up a Donation Bin
A successful donation exercise would mean reaching as many people as possible with several pairs of shoes. To achieve this, your obvious option would be organizing a shoe drive which normally requires community coordination and teamwork. You may have identified a team, school, or club that could benefit from your shoe collection but you feel that it is not enough. Well, you could simply set up a well-labeled donation bin in your workplace, church, or business. Information about the cause should be clear and you could back it up with some information leaflets in the location. You will be surprised by how much support in shoe donations you could get from this.
Shoe drive initiatives are some of the most effective programs to support needy people in schools or teams. Groups, individuals, or charity organizations initiate them to support a worthy cause. To succeed in this, you have to maximize your reach to as many people as possible in order to get more donations. You can get more people to your cause by sharing touching stories of the school, team, or club that you intend to support. Get this by putting up flyers in your neighborhood, using church announcements or infomercials on local radio stations. Also, use social media platforms to spread the information about your planned shoe drive.