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Soles4Souls & Opry to create World's Largest Tower of Shoes

03
Nov '08
Soles4Souls announced its plans to partner with Opry Mills in Nashville, Tennessee, to host a holiday shoe drive that will create the "World's Largest Tower of Shoes." The shoe drive will start Wednesday, November 5, 2008 and culminate on New Year's Eve, December 31, 2008.

Throughout the holidays shoppers will be able to monitor the progress of the drive via clear panels installed in the Tower's sides.

Soles4Souls and Opry Mills are asking Tennesseans and out-of-town visitors from across America to come to the mall during the busy holiday season, and to "Step Up" and help those hurting around the world.

Although economic times are extremely tough in the United States, anyone can support this cause with one small donation of a pair of new or "gently" worn shoes, as well as a cash donation as little as $2.00. The rewards for participating include merchant discounts, as well as the joy and reward in helping others who need a "Step Up" in their lives.

"This is a creative and effective way for us to spread the message of our organization," said Soles4Souls Founder and CEO, Wayne Elsey. "The amount of support we've received from local businesses and individuals has been incredible, and with their help, we are looking forward to breaking the world record for most shoes collected in a single event," he said.

"This holiday season, we are inviting the public to "Shop Smarter" at Opry Mills and take advantage of many special amenities we are putting in place," said Marketing Director Lynn Kittel. "The Soles4Souls initiative, with its focus on reuse and refurbishment in support of those in need, is a wonderful complement to that program. "

One never knows when life will hit hard or where a disaster will strike. One day you have everything you need; the next you may only have your life. A pair of shoes can help people begin the rebuilding process.

Shoes not only bring them hope, but in millions of cases they can save their life. It is estimated that Americans have 1.5 billion pairs of unworn shoes lying in their closets while over 300 million children around the world have never owned a pair of shoes. This is an opportunity to "Step Up" and to help Soles4Souls with their mission of "Changing the World, One Pair at a Time."

The idea for the "World's Largest Tower of Shoes" was inspired by a letter that the non-profit received earlier this year from a young boy, Joseph Wells, who held his own shoe drive last year. His letter is titled "If I Were a Gift." It reads:

If I found a magic wand and was able to turn myself into any Christmas gift I wanted, I know exactly what I would be. I would be a pair of shoes that would always fit. I know it sounds crazy, but there are people all over the world who can't afford a pair of shoes. I would give myself to a child in a country called Haiti. The people in this country are so poor that they can't even afford a pair of shoes and they cannot go to school if they aren't wearing shoes.


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