by Julia Ward
Looking down at your feet, you may not notice anything out of the ordinary. You are most likely wearing a pair of shoes, and this pair of shoes may be one of five pairs of shoes that you have, or even ten. A pair of shoes is something that most do not really think about as out of the ordinary. It is actually something that we take for granted.
Over the summer I started seeing people, both men and women wearing slip on sneakers in various colors and patterns, but all with the same shape and overall style. I started wondering where these shoes came from and I soon found out that they are from a company called TOMS. TOMS is not like a normal shoe company, but instead they focus on the idea of one for one. The main focal point of this company is that when someone purchases a pair of shoes made by the company TOMS, the company then gives a pair of shoes to a child in need somewhere around the world.
This company has really tried to emphasize the importance of sustainability, as these shoes, in the long term, provide health and access to education for children in need. They have created partnerships with humanitarian organizations around the world to decipher which countries, cities, towns, and villages have children without shoes. They have provided shoes to children in countries such as Guatemala, El Salvador, and Uganda. And as you know, children’s feet grow at a rapid rate. TOMS doesn’t just give a child one pair of shoes and call it quits, but it continues to give the child a pair of shoes throughout their childhood. I believe that it is extremely important to note that they don’t just give a child one pair of shoes after you have spent money to buy a pair of shoes for yourself, but it is the fact that they continue to give the child a pair of shoes even after you stop buying.
But why shoes? Without shoes children cannot attend school, and are more susceptible to diseases and other health problems. In many third world countries, where shoes and scarce, children are forced to walk barefoot just about everywhere they go-to get water, food, and to school. But in many cases, where uniforms are required to attend school, children cannot receive an education without a pair of shoes on their feet. These children are then more likely to get cuts in their feet, which will most likely lead to more serious infections without proper medical care. By just having one pair of shoes, each child is more likely to have a better, more productive future due to the fact of the endless possibilities that shoes provide.
If you are interested in learning more about the TOMS movement, check out the website! http://www.toms.com/our-movement-why