In poor communities, having proper footwear is not a priority for the people. Nevertheless, footwear is helpful in protecting them, especially the children, from diseases they might catch or discomforts they might experience while barefoot outdoors. This is why an invention called The Shoe That Grows is able to change the lives of many children in impoverished areas around the world.
The Shoe That Grows is a low-cost, high-lifetime shoe. It can last up to five years and expands up to five sizes, so the owner can use it for a long time. This is ideal for underprivileged children who are normally seen with either no footwear or with shoes that do not properly fit them.
Kenton Lee of the non-profit organization Because International had the idea to create the revolutionary shoes during a visit to Kenya in 2007.
He saw a little girl in a white dress next to him with shoes that barely fit her feet. He was inspired to create The Shoe That Grows to help other underprivileged children around the world. The organization’s philosophy is “making things better by making better things,” which is evident in their footwear design.
The shoes are designed to expand and fit children’s feet as they grow.
The front, back, and sides of the shoes–more accurately sandals or ‘expandals’–are adjustable, so they can expand up to five sizes. They are also made of durable material that can last up to five years even under rough conditions. It is made of tough, compressed-rubber sole, a leather body, and durable metal clips.
The innovative creation can protect children who are more vulnerable to soil-transmitted diseases and parasites.
These diseases and parasites can cause other illnesses and even death. Aside from that, the shoes can prevent cuts, burns, and blisters. The shoes also improve the children’s overall quality of life. According to The Shoe That Grows website:
“With shoes, kids are more healthy, attend school more often, and are more confident. The Shoe That Grows has 5x the impact of ordinary shoes because it expands 5 sizes and lasts for years.”
The shoes are available for redistribution. Those who do not have the capacity to redistribute the shoes can make a donation to the organization instead.
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