Pay it Forward Friday with TOMS Shoes

Aug 2012

I’m not usually one to fall in love with what someone is wearing and run out the next day to try and get my hands on the same thing, but this was an exception. My dear friend Joanne was having an event at her fabulous store in Roslindale. Being the style maven that she is, of course she looked fabulous too. The heat was oppressive, but she appeared cool as a cucumber, as if she had just floated in from a Moroccan riad. Of course the whole outfit was rocking’, but what I was mad for were the shoes. They gave me one of those take me there moments. I had to ask…

I imagined souks and faded denim on Capri.

Hello…reality check, it’s just a pair of shoes Alison. Turns out this post was a no brainier for me. Are you familiar with Tom’s Shoes? Buy a pair of shoes I was coveting and Tom’s gives another pair to a child in need. They call this One for One. I call it perfect! A Giving Pair-the pair of shoes you purchase-enables TOMS to give another pair to a child in need. And giving responsibly is what TOMS is all about. They work with their Giving Partners to determine the sizes and quantities needed for the children they serve. Just a perfect idea for Pay it Forward Friday.

It didn’t take long for the world to notice this new approach to business – in 2007, only a year after its beginning, TOMS was honored with the prestigious People’s Design Award from the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, Smithsonian Institution. And two years after that, TOMS and Blake Mycoskie were proud recipients of the Secretary of State’s 2009 Award for Corporate Excellence (ACE) presented by Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton. The award celebrates companies’ committment to corporate social responsibility, innovation, exemplary practices, and democratic values worldwide.

While running TOMS, Blake is a sought-after speaker at campuses and conferences all over the country. He is passionate about inspiring young people to help make tomorrow better, encouraging them to include giving in everything they do, from business practices to day-to-day decisions. His hope is to see a future full of socially minded businesses, and consumers.

This unique vision for the future came into focus in 2006, when he witnessed the hardships facing children growing up barefoot in Argentina. He felt a need to help, and the One for One™ movement was born. He returned the following year with friends and family to hand-place 10,000 pairs of new shoes on children.

So my shoes arrived in their recycled cardboard box, with recycled inserts, a little cotton travel bag and a note telling my they were VEGAN. I was in eco-friendly heaven and all ready to be transported to my on little Moroccan daydream.

Check out their site and go on your own little adventure.