December 4, 2019 – One person’s unwanted shoes can help provide
meaningful opportunities that many in developing nations need, which is why
Jake J. Porter III, M.D., MPH,
Summit Sports Medicine and Orthopaedic Surgery, has launched a shoe drive to collect pairs of new or gently worn shoes.
The shoes will be delivered to Soles4Souls–a non-profit social enterprise
that creates sustainable jobs and provides relief through the distribution
of shoes around the world. Founded in 2006, the organization has distributed
more than 30 million pairs of new and gently worn shoes in 127 countries.
The World Bank estimates that approximately 767 million people live on
less than $1.90 per day. Many people living in extreme poverty simply
do not have access to stable employment.
Soles4Souls’ micro-enterprise programs offer a long-term solution
to poverty through job creation in places like Haiti, Honduras and Sierra
Leone. They also give a second life to unwanted shoes, keeping them out
of landfills and protecting the environment.
“I am a strong supporter of Soles4Souls’ mission,” said
Porter. “To know that we can create a meaningful impact around the
globe by simply collecting and donating what is otherwise destined for
the trash is a really great feeling.”
The shoes are sold for an average of $1 per pair to non-profit partners
in developing countries that provide business training to local entrepreneurs.
The entrepreneurs purchase the shoes and are then able to start businesses
of their own by selling the product in their local marketplaces. This
allows entrepreneurs the opportunity to earn a sustainable income, and
ultimately purchase necessities like food, shelter and education.
The income generated by selling just one pair of shoes in Haiti can provide
up to five meals for a family in need, whereas 30 pairs sold by an entrepreneur
in Honduras can provide up to a year of schooling for a child. Revenue
generated by Soles4Souls’ micro-enterprise operations funds the
organization’s free distribution programs that provide new shoes
to people in need both in the U.S. and around the world.
“Millions of pairs of shoes lay idle in people’s closets,”
explained Porter. “Give those to Soles4Souls instead, and know that
you are taking a step to help disrupt the cycle of poverty around the
New or gently worn shoes can be dropped off Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. –
4 p.m., at
Summit Sports Medicine and Orthopaedic Surgery, 3025 Shrine Road, Suite 390. The shoe drive will end December 31. For
more information, please call 912-466-7340.