We talk a lot about how we love partnering with organizations. So we wanted to try something new and do what we plan to call a “Partner Spotlight!” This will consist of us introducing you to our amazing partners and sharing what we love about them! Partner Spotlight #1: The Shoe That Grows.

Partner Spotlight #1: The Shoe That Grows.

Did you know that many children in developing countries do not have shoes? We wake up, get dressed, and put our shoes on without thinking anything of it. In fact, we not only put on a pair of shoes, but we have lots of pairs of shoes to choose from. This is not the reality of people in developing countries.

Why does this matter to a medical team? Well, children contract illnesses through their feet because they do not have shoes. Over 1.5 billion people suffer from soil-transmitted diseases that could have been prevented had they worn proper footwear. These diseases can even lead to death if left untreated. Thankfully, we are able to treat many of these illness’ during our medical outreaches but, without shoes, children will likely become ill again soon. The cycle will continue to repeat itself, and they won’t receive help until our team visits again.

When children experience these preventable illnesses, it affects their growth, their mood, and their ability to attend school. The Shoes That Grow organization provides very durable shoes to children that are made from compressed rubber (similar to a car tire), antibacterial synthetic, and high-grade velcro. The quality of these shoes are importance since the children will wear this single pair of shoes longterm.

You may be thinking, “Wouldn’t the kids grow out of these shoes in a few months?” We get it, kids’ feet grow so quickly and the need for a new pair of shoes always seems to be right around the corner! But the great thing about The Shoes That Grow organization is that the shoes do just that — they GROW! They expand up to 5 sizes so the child can wear them for several years. This is crucial for the shoes to grow along with the kids so that more shoes can be given to different kids instead of needing to replace the previous pairs of shoes that they outgrow.

The shoes come in a variety of colors: pink, blue, tan and black. The children love the shoes, and, for many, it’s their very first pair of shoes! Imagine the gratitude they feel for something that we consider to be a necessity instead of a luxury.

How We Partner: We distribute approximately 200 pairs on each of our medical mission trips. One of our trip volunteers fits the children for the shoes to be sure we provide the best options for them. Each pair of shoes cost only $15 yet they last for years! We are grateful for generous donors and partners that help us fundraise to provide the shoes for the children.

How YOU Can Help: The Shoes That Grow are a wonderful organization to work with and provides everything people need who want to launch a fundraiser. They assist donors and those fundraising by giving them a created fundraising page, resources, and a sample pair of shoes to raise support for obtaining shoes for future trips.

Would you would like to help us obtain shoes for the children we are seeing on our upcoming trips? Contact us or check out their website and let’s work together!