This week is the Second Annual Barefoot Week, organized by Soles4Souls, and a host of celebrities are stepping forward to support it.
Soles4Souls is an international shoe charity dedicated to providing a free pair of shoes to people in need. This week, the non-profit organization will be distributing thousands of pairs of new shoes in the United States while it also collects “gently worn” shoes from the general public during thousands of concurrent shoe drives at schools, churches and community centers.
The campaign is being spearheaded by Scarlett Johansson, who previously donated 2000 pairs of new shoes from her own line of Reebok footwear, and is lending her name to help raise publicity about Barefoot Week. Antawn Jamison, Jessica Simpson, Brittany Snow, Kellie Pickler, Luke Perry, Riddick Bowe, Arnold Palmer, Tom Watson, Amy Grant, Vince Gill, Chris Hope, Jeff Fisher and Tim Dunn have also voiced their support for the weeklong series of events.
“If you can’t dig deep in your pockets, than dig in your closet!” said Johansson. “Americans can make a huge difference with Soles4Souls by donating shoes. Souls4Soles gives away a pair of shoes every 13 seconds in over 125 countries, with over 55 percent donated to fellow Americans.”
The full event schedule is:
Monday, June 1st: In Indianapolis, Soles4Souls will be working with Wheeler Mission Ministries to hand out 4,000 pairs of new shoes and 6,000 pairs of flip-flops to people served by the downtown mission. Visit www.wheelermission.org for more information.
Tuesday, June 2nd: In Atlanta, Soles4Souls will be working with City of Refuge, a non-profit organization that offers both life saving resources and life building tools to individuals and families in Atlanta who are living on the margin. They will be handing out 4,000 pairs of new shoes and 6,000 pairs of flip-flops. Visit www.cityofrefugeinc.com for more information on the Soles4Souls partner in Atlanta.
Wednesday, June 3rd: Soles4Souls will be working side-by-side with The Foundry, a Birmingham-area charity focused on rebuilding lives and restoring hope of recovering addicts, ex-inmates and the homeless. They will be handing out 4,000 pairs of new shoes and 6,000 pairs of flip-flops. Learn more at www.thefoundryonline.org.
Thursday, June 4th: Soles4Souls will be at the Midnight Mission in Los Angeles, working with thousands of homeless on Skid Row. The Mission provides a myriad of services to people in need, such as education and job opportunities, drug and alcohol treatment, and medical and legal services. They will be handing out 4,000 pairs of new shoes and 6,000 pairs of flip-flops. Visit www.midnightmission.org for more information.
Friday, June 5th: Soles4Souls will be working with local retailer Shoe Mill (www.shoemill.com), as well as adidas (also headquartered in Portland) to provide 5,000 pairs of new shoes and 3,000 pairs of new socks to the large homeless youth population and families living on the streets. The event will be held in the North Park Blocks (NW 8th and NW Everett Streets). Delivered Dish (www.d-dish.com), a local restaurant delivery service, is catering the event. Janus Youth Programs (www.janusyouth.org), Outside In (www.outsidein.org), Bridgetown Ministries (www.bridgetownministries.com) and other homeless programs for at-risk youth are jointly sponsoring the event.
On Saturday, June 6th, Soles4Souls will return to Los Angeles and appear at the Los Angeles Mission (www.losangelesmission.org) to distribute 2500 pairs of new shoes and 3500 pairs of flip-flops to the needy people served during the annual “Community BBQ” sponsored by the Mission.