Soles4Souls Increases Commitment to 1 Million Pairs of Shoes for Haiti Relief Effort

Shoe charity revises commitment based on level of support from partners in footwear industry and general public

Jan 16, 2010, 18:18 ET from Soles4Souls Inc.

NASHVILLE, Tenn., Jan. 16 /PRNewswire/ -- Soles4Souls, Inc. announced on Saturday that it was increasing the number of shoes donated to victims of the Haiti earthquake to one million pairs.  Wayne Elsey, Founder and CEO of the shoe charity, said that the increase is possible because of the immediate and generous response from his charity's partners in the shoe industry and the level of grassroots support from the general public.

"In the first three days of this relief effort, more than 250,000 pairs of new shoes were pledged by our incredible partners in the footwear industry, who stepped up to reach out to people in need during their worst hour," said Elsey.  "We are very moved by the generosity of the general public.  Thousands of people are holding community drives right now to collect shoes, clothing, supplies and funds for use in a sustained giving campaign in Haiti," he said.

Elsey acknowledged the difficulties in getting the shipments into Haiti because of the unusable port in it capital city, Port-Au-Prince.  "One third of the whole country is displaced and the capital city is in chaos.  We are fortunate to have longtime distribution partners in many parts of Haiti and the Dominican Republic who can deliver the relief packages safely and securely over land without using the main port," he said.

Soles4Souls has already distributed thousands of "family relief packages," which include food, water, medical supplies, cleaning products, baby products and clothes, as well as shoes.  The distribution will be sustained throughout 2010, according to Elsey.

"It doesn't make sense to simply drop off one million pairs of shoes at once," Elsey said.  "This relief effort will continue long after the news cameras leave and people begin to forget about the tragedy.  We are committed to providing free supplies throughout 2010 for everyone who needs our assistance," he said.

For more information on Soles4Souls and its relief partners, visit

About Soles4Souls®

Soles4Souls is a Nashville-based charity that collects shoes from warehouses of footwear companies and the closets of people like you.  We distribute these shoes, free of charge, to people in need around the world. Since 2005, Soles4Souls has given away over 7 million pairs of new and gently worn shoes (currently distributing one pair every 9 seconds). The shoes have been distributed in 125 countries, including Haiti, Kenya, Nepal and the United States. Soles4Souls is a 501(c)(3) recognized by the IRS and donating parties are eligible for tax advantages. Visit for more information.

SOURCE Soles4Souls Inc.