Random Rec Wednesday: TOMS

28 Sep

Do you know the story behind TOMS?

Many of us have seen the signature TOMS shoe, but there is more to TOMS than just a basic canvas slip-on. I’ll admit, I’d seen these shoes for a few years and didn’t know the story behind them. Now I’m a huge fan because not only are they are super comfortable, but I feel like I’ve made a difference. (Cue: standing ovation)

Blake Mycoskie

In 2006, Blake Mycoskie traveled to Argentina. When he saw kids without shoes, he knew he had to do something to help. So he created TOMS, a company that would match every pair of shoes purchased with a pair of new shoes given to a child in need. A shoe for a shoe!

TOMS is now in more than 20 countries world-wide and over 1 million shoes have been given away through TOMS One for One program.

Why shoes?

Most of us take shoes for granted. In many countries, children grow up without shoes and are at increased risk of contracting soil-transmitted diseases, and getting cuts and sores on their feet that cause infections. And in many countries,  children aren’t allowed to attend school without shoes. No shoes, no school. How sad it that?

Shoe drops

The signature TOMS shoe is a unisex canvas slip on because it prevents the problem of needing to replace broken shoelaces, which many families cannot afford.

TOMS organizes Shoe Drops in countries such as South Africa, Ethiopia, Haiti, Rwanda, Argentina, and even here in the United States where staff and volunteers travel to a country to distribute shoes to children.

TOMS campus clubs

Because so many people want to get involved, TOMS now has campus clubs on many high school and college campuses where students can get involved.  “But, there is no TOMS campus club at my school,” you say. Well dry your tears because TOMS will even help you start one! Just fill out this application.

Start Something That Matters

Blake ‘s #1 NYT bestseller, Start Something That Matters outlines the Toms journey and inspires readers to make a difference.

Hint: Start with your shoes.

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