Funds2OrgsYou love your sneakers. They are with you when you go running every morning as the sun starts to rise and before your morning cup of coffee and day at work. Your children have a number of pairs depending on the varying sports they play.

But, did you know that you could use those sneakers to help nonprofits and others who need your help?

Most people do not realize that they deal with nonprofits and charities every day: the local library, your children’s school, youth sports organization, your church, the museum or hospital. All of these represent a part of your life at some point or another.

Were you aware that you could help them with your gently used shoes and sneakers?

As a good swath of the country starts looking toward spring, now is the time to think about cleaning up your closet and doing some good with those shoes and sneakers. By the way, it is estimated that on average a woman has 20 pairs of shoes in her closet and only 5 that she actually uses.

Funds2Orgs is a social enterprise that was established to accomplish three things:

  1. It provides an easy, fun, innovative and proven way to fundraise for our local nonprofit organization, such as a school or church, without ever having to write a check or make a cash donation. All you have to do is to get your community to donate all of the extra shoes and sneakers that are hidden in their closets and home. Working with Funds2Orgs, those items become a form of currency and based on the total weight collected at the end of a campaign, Fundrs2Orgs will pay the nonprofit. There really is no easier way to fundraise.
  1. We are looking to do our part to help save the planet. Did you know that when you toss shoes and sneakers into the garbage, it could take decades for all the components to decompose? Some parts take longer than the average human life span. We can do better. By partnering with Funds2Orgs, an organization and all who participate in a shoe drive are helping diminish their carbon footprint. This, in turn, helps all of us to save our planet and home. The shoes that are collected are sent to developing nations to be repurposed for greater social impact.
  1. And, that is our third goal. With your help, we can help others who live in developing nations such as Haiti, Honduras or Tanzania. Individuals in these countries have very limited education and work opportunities. We are looking to change that. We are working to provide families with a chance to create their own path out of poverty. And, with the shoes and sneakers that are collected, we partner with local in-country hub distributors and small micro-business entrepreneurs to provide them with the necessary inventory for them to establish businesses, which will provide them with a living income.

In the United States alone, it is estimated that we throw away approximately 600 million pairs of shoes. Can you imagine if we took even 10 or 20 percent of that out of the landfills where they create a health hazards as they disintegrate and repurposed those shoes for a new life?

Did you know that 300 million people around the world are so impoverished that they do not own shoes? And, did you know that this is not only a health hazard, which can cause disease or even death, but it prevents the poorest among us from being able to attend school or even to go out and try to find some limited work opportunity. Shoes are essential and a requirement for attending school and jobs.

Next time you are in your closet, do me a favor and just do a quick count of the shoes you own. Then ask your other family members to do the same. My bet is you probably have at least a number of pairs that you would be able to provide for charity to accomplish all that I previously described.

And, if you are so inclined to help us make a difference, I invite you to please reach out to your local school, PTA, youth sport organization, church or nonprofit where you are affiliated and suggest they look at sponsoring a shoe drive in the community in partnership with Funds2Orgs. I think you will be very glad you did.


© 2015 Wayne Elsey and Not Your Father’s Charity. All Rights Reserved.