For the Love of the Shoes

Today, we will take a step back from the expensive and limited-edition shoes I usually discuss to recognize a great shoe idea and company: Toms Shoes.

If you have a pair of these shoes, then thank you. You are helping out someone in need. If you want to help someone out and want to do it in a really great way, pick up a pair and enjoy, because that is all you have to do; the rest is automatically taken care of.

Toms Shoes was started by Blake Mycoskie in 2006 after a trip to Argentina, where he noticed an alarming number of barefoot children in the poorer villages. The design is based on an Argentinean shoe, the Alpargata, and the concept is simple and really fantastic.

For every pair of Toms Shoes purchased, Friends of Toms, a registered non-profit affiliate of Toms Shoes, gives a pair of new shoes to a child in need. The canvas shoes have been given to children in 25 countries worldwide, including the United States (Louisiana, Kentucky, Mississippi, and Florida), Argentina, Ethiopia, Rwanda, Guatemala, Haiti, and South Africa. Toms are sold at more than 500 stores nationwide and internationally, including Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, and Whole Foods Market. As of 2012, Toms has given away more than one million pairs of shoes. (Source: Wikipedia).

The shoes start at around $44 from what I have seen, and it is a refreshing change from the $200–$300 Nike shoes that seem to get all the headlines. So, do someone in need a favor and pick up a pair for yourself—or as a gift, so two people can benefit.


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