Thursday, September 17, 2009

Shoe Recycling

Yesterday I posted about giving away six pairs of shoes. Today I'm going to tell you about some good ideas for things to do with those shoes. Credit for these ideas goes largely to Whirlwind, who feeds me so many great decluttering resources.

You can always donate shoes to local organizations and thrift shops. But there are so many places to recycle shoes where they will be reused for good purposes.

The Crocs company has an organization called Crocs Cares (formerly SolesUnited) which donates Crocs around the world. Their website says they are undergoing some changes, so it is not clear if they will continue to accept donations of used Crocs. I am currently waiting to hear back from them about this and will let you know here as soon as I do.

Soles4Souls is an organization that takes donated shoes and gives them to people who need them all across the world. They accept any kind of shoes from dress shoes and sneakers to dance shoes and flip flops as long as they are new or gently used. They will even accept a solitary shoe without a mate.

They consider "gently used" to mean that you would still wear them: no holes in the soles, with shoelaces, reasonably clean. Any shoes they receive that don't make the cut get recycled, however, so send along any you find.

Soles4Souls has three locations to which you can ship or drop off your old shoes. You might also be able to locate a local place that collects shoes for Soles4Souls by entering your zip code on their website. The last place I bought shoes for Quinn had a donation box.

If your sneakers are too worn out to be used by another person, consider sending them to Nike's Reuse a Shoe program. (They accept all brands.) They take old sneakers and grind them up into materials to create sports tracks, playgrounds, courts, and more. Get the address for where to send your shoes or learn how to set up a shoe drive on the Reuse a Shoe website.

Does anyone else have tips for recycling, reusing, or donating shoes?


Kirsten said...

Thanks for this info! It is time to get rid of the bridesmaid shoes, et al and do some serious shoe down-sizing. I've had good luck giving away sports shoes on Craig's List and selling my daughter's rejects (she wears a weird size) on ebay.

Manic Mommy said...

I have dozens I should/could get rid of - including probably seven or eight pairs of 'gently used' sneakers. I'll look into it! Thanks.

BetteJo said...

My daughter steals my shoes, I never have any to donate. Advantage: Stimey! For having boys!

kuan said...

Soles4Souls is doing a great job of shoe donation program. Skechers and Toms company team up to this organization.

auto donation program

IansDad said...

"In Ian's Boots" ( is another place to send shoes