Sex and the City devotees already know what an impact a pair of shoes can make. But why should the glee of buying new shoes end there? What if along with a snazzy new pair of kicks, you ended up with the good feeling that comes from supporting a worthy cause and changing someone's life for the better?
Both notorious for their social responsibility and global impact in their own right, two philanthropic organizations, TOMS Shoes and Charity: Water have joined forces to launch the TOMS Shoes for Charity: Water collection, two limited-edition shoes that will help build a clean-water well in the village of Sekura in Northwest Ethiopia.
The two different styles of shoes (one features a tonal map of Africa and the other a multi-tonal water illustration) retail for $58 and will be available until the well is completed. If you buy a pair, you'll receive details on the money was used to build the well, the impact it has on the lives of the villagers, and photos of the finished project.
As always, every TOMS purchase results in the donation of a new pair of shoes to a child in need, meaning that your one-time contribution will now have twice the impact.
Though not necessarily known for their philanthropy (or sustainability) Payless Shoes is the company behind our second way to change a life through shoes. Although the "Friendship Shoe" doesn't look like much on the shelf, it has endless potential, just like the inner-city kids that will benefit every time a pair is purchased.
The white canvas shoe comes with a set of markers that can be used for decorating the shoe in the wearer desires- a freedom Payless hopes will encourage creativity and a celebration of friendship. Not only are the shoes decidedly DIY, the company has promised to donate 100 percent of the net profits go to support the Fresh Air Fund, a 130+ year old organization in rural Pennsylvania.
This not-for-profit provides free summer vacations to boys and girls, ages six to 12 years old, who reside in low-income communities in New York City and are eager to experience the simple pleasures of life outside the city. Today, more than 1.7 million of New York’s neediest children have benefited from free summer vacations through The Fresh Air Fund.