Why new athletic shoes?

Childhood is supposed to be a magical, carefree time. But kids can suffer excruciating stigma, bullying, and ridicule…all for lack of decent shoes.

We don’t give just any old shoes to kids. (In fact, we NEVER give out previously-owned shoes.) All of our kids receive brand new shoes measured exactly for their feet.

When our kids get their new athletic shoes, schools report that participation in sports and physical activities goes up nearly 75% and attendance goes up 43%.


Just ask the schools

“It was like those shoes broke a wall of ice. With those beautiful shoes chosen just for her, she just opened up, she’s more talkative and better able to follow instructions. The simple gift of shoes to this girl and her siblings not only changed her behavior, but it created a sense of trust between the school and her family.”

Shortly after receiving his shoes, we heard from that school’s nurse. “He came to me with two dollars asking if he could donate the money so another family could receive shoes like his family did.”

So when people ask us, “Why shoes?,” the answer is easy…Just ask those who were directly touched. Like Pomona Junior High.

Our story

In 1992, in Claremont, California, Elodie (Silva) McGuirk heard the story of a child’s need for new shoes. Elodie engaged her coworkers at Harvey Mudd College in Claremont, CA to help deliver shoes to kids in need at that school in Pomona, thus launching Shoes That Fit. Today, we are the largest national organization of our kind.

Shoes That Fit helps approximately 100,000 children annually at almost 2,000 schools across the United States. In fact, over 1.7 million pairs of new shoes and other necessities have been raised and distributed to date.