Special-edition, Congolese-inspired TOMS Shoes
We're teaming up with Giving Partner Eastern Congo Initiative (ECI), an advocacy and grant-making organization founded by Ben Affleck, on two Congolese-inspired designs with an additional give. Read More >>
TOMS x charity: water - An Eyewer collaboration
TOMS and charity: water, an organization founded in 2006 (like TOMS!) that’s dedicated to to helping bring clean and safe drinking water to people in developing nations, join forces for the first-ever TOMS Eyewear collab! Read More >>
Giving TOMS Shoes in the DRC
Founded by Ben Affleck in 2010, ECI is an advocacy and grant-making organization that works with and for the people of DRC, the third most populous country in Africa, and one that struggled under a cycle of violence for nearly 20 years – particularly in the east. Read More >>
Search as you may, but you won’t spot Matuwa on a Google map. But turn off the main dusty road in Manafwa District in Eastern Uganda and follow the smaller dirt path that winds up a large mountain, and soon you’ll find it. The community is quaint, with well-kept school grounds and a large playing field for the hundreds of students it educates.
The same goes for Tsengwa, another tiny village located at the top of a steep, winding path on the side of a mountain. A path so steep and covered with dangerous rocks that trucks carrying new TOMS Shoes wouldn’t even make it to the top. Volunteers had to hike to get to the school to distribute shoes.
TOMS Shoe Giving Partner Arlington Academy of Hope (AAoH) works hard to reach the most remote communities and villages in Uganda with new TOMS Shoes. Because they are among some of the most isolated communities in Uganda, they have very limited resources available.
“We’ve found that the unreachable schools are often the ones that need the most assistance,” the staff at AAoH said.
Arlington Academy of Hope shared that in many of the schools in the villages they serve, children have never worn or owned a pair of shoes, which was evident by the poor condition of the children’s feet and how many cases of jiggers (tiny, burrowing fleas) they saw. At a shoe distribution in Matuwa, AAoH partnered with a health clinic, which offered children treatment for jiggers and health education lessons.
To help combat jiggers and other infections, which can be partly prevented by wearing shoes, AAoH pairs their TOMS Shoe distributions with interactive health education lessons that focus on hand washing, oral health and foot care.
“We hope these lessons will help the kids understand the importance of wearing their new shoes and how the shoes can help improve health overall,” AAoH said.
They utilize games like “Simon Says” and Jeopardy to make lessons fun, engaging and informative for kids.
Over the course of the shoe distributions, Arlington Academy of Hope said they saw countless giddy children, eager to play in their new TOMS Shoes. We’re proud of our partnership with AAoH and their commitment to reach the communities and children who are most in need.