GreenSole was established by two professional athletes who each threw out at least three pairs of worn trainers a year. Deciding there must be a better destiny for the shoes than rotting away in a big landfill somewhere, they kickstarted an initiative that repurposes old shoes and turns them into comfortable and trendy footwear for rural school children in India that walk to school every day.
Before making the shoes, GreenSole selects a village in need and takes count of the number of shoes needed and the sizes. The old shoes are disassembled at the organisation’s factory, the soles are cut down to size to form the base, the uppers are used to create straps and the laces are reserved for packaging the new shoes. The end result is a simple but comfortable slipper that goes to a child in need.
To raise further funds for the production of the shoes, GreenSole has also started selling the slippers in store so that the public can buy a pair for themselves or donate to others. In addition to donating new shoes to disadvantaged children, the group also sets up campaigns in the villages to create awareness around the health-related benefits associated with wearing shoes.
Aside from its positive social impact, the initiative also plays a part in reducing the amount of waste that ends up in landfills and in doing so, is helping conserve the environment from further pollution.