Eradicating Shoelessness

Eradicating Shoelessness

Pledge No. 1

Our first project aims to tackle "shoelessness" in India. Partnering with ACTION SHOES, we have begun implementing our project in the National Capital Region (NCR), and our goal is to make sure that no person walks barefoot in that region.

Shoelessness is one of the many markers of poverty in India. Approximately 50 million people in the country cannot afford any kind of footwear. Footwear is instrumental in maintaining personal hygiene and avoiding fatal injuries such as deep cuts and dangerous infections like tetanus. The Tendulkar Committee Report (2009), which estimates the level of poverty in India, included footwear as one of the items of expenditure that needs to be taken into account while evaluating whether a person is above or below the poverty line. Unfortunately, today in India, there are simply not enough interventions being made to change the lack of access to footwear in India.

Having identified the need to work towards eradicating shoelessness, SOLVE has proposed a novel way of managing social entrepreneurship and responsibility for the footwear industry, in collaboration with ACTION SHOES. Our process has three stages:


ACTION SHOES has initiated a buyback program for old shoes in exchange for a 10% discount on every new pair sold. It will also set up donation bins to encourage people to donate their old shoes.


ACTION SHOES will then refurbish these donated shoes by employing local cobblers and craftsmen on a contractual model.


SOLVE will acquire the refurbished shoes and coordinate with the Ekal Vidyalayas, low income schools, to efficiently distribute the shoes to children and adults from resource-poor groups across Delhi NCR.