Shoe Drive Offers Hope to Tsunami Victims
Bright Hope International Continues the Call for Footwear Donations
CHICAGO, Jan. 31 /PRNewswire/ -- For those who made it through the Asian tsunami disaster, some everyday items are becoming a luxury. Clean water, housing, clothing, and footwear are scarce. Earlier this month, Chicago-based relief organization Bright Hope International helped spearhead a massive relief effort to obtain footwear from shoe companies and individuals alike. The shoe drive has resulted in 92,000 pairs of new shoes being collected and shipped to the hardest hit areas.
"It has been an incredible effort," said Wayne Elsey, a footwear executive who helped organize the shoe drive. "We've seen both companies and individuals really step up to make a difference, and we're nearing our goal of 100,000 pairs."
Elsey noted that corporate donations were still coming in. "David Z Shoes
in New York City just donated 3,000 brand new pairs because they just heard about our shoe drive," he said. "Georgia Boot just donated 1,500 new pairs. We need more companies like David Z Shoes and Georgia Boot to recognize the urgent need and take action."
Bright Hope International is working with the Indonesian embassy to
facilitate the shipping of shoes and other needed supplies to the hardest hit regions in Indonesia. U.N. Officials in Banda Aceh province, one of the worst hit areas, report that many children and adults do not have footwear of any kind. These conditions can result in cuts, abrasions, infections, and worse.
"Companies and individuals who donate will receive a tax-deductible
receipt for their gift," said Craig Dyer, President of Bright Hope. "And
being able to provide such a basic need is a reward in and of itself."
Individuals can also make a big impact, according to Elsey. "A woman
named Joyell Dalton in Nashville, Tennessee organized a shoe drive through Grace Baptist Church that resulted in almost 30,000 pairs of shoes being collected and shipped over to Indonesia," he said. "Another in South Florida collected almost 10,000. These people are truly making an immediate difference."
Bright Hope International's mission is to provide for the physical,
economic and spiritual needs of people living at the lowest economic level
through personal, empowering, holistic, local church partnerships and
projects. They see this natural disaster as the highest priority.
"We are primarily asking individuals to make financial donations to Bright Hope International," Dyer said. "If you are a retailer or manufacturer and
would like to participate by donating your inventory or making a cash contribution, please contact us at our Chicago-area office."
If you are interested in making a donation or sending excess and obsolete inventory to Bright Hope International, please contact Craig Dyer at Bright Hope International, or you can call Wayne Elsey at 615-406-9738.
SOURCE Bright Hope International
Web Site: http://www.brighthope.org