TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) - Thanks to the folks in the Wabash Valley more than 1,000 pairs of worn out shoes were collected in 2012. The shoes were collected as part of an effort by TREES Inc. Education Committee to prevent shoes from being hauled away to the local landfill.
"We like to encourage recycling, especially of things that can be used and repurposed in our community," said TREES Inc. Board Member Joy Sacopulos.
In the spring of 2012 TREES Inc. held a shoe collection drive. During that time approximately 800 pairs of shoes where collected at various locations around the community.
While 800 pairs of shoes is a fair amount of waste diverted from the landfill, TREES Inc. did not stop there. They set the bar even higher by holding an end of the year collection on America Recycles Day, November 15th.
For the past couple weeks TREES Inc. members have been working feverishly, sorting through the newly collected shoes. A total of 247 shoes were collected during the week of America Recycles Day, thus putting the total shoe collection in 2012 over 1,000 pairs. The shoes which still look good and appear to be in good working order will be donated to Terre Haute Catholic Charities and Wabash Valley Goodwill Industries.
"There are a lot of ways to help your community and this is one of those ways. We are always grateful to partner with organizations who share our mission. A pair of shoes to a child or a Senior can really show hope in their future," Catholic Charities Agency Director John Etling said.
"Organizations that conduct donation drives, on behalf of Goodwill Industries, help provide work for people with work related barriers," Wabash Valley Goodwill Industries Director Bill Tennis said.
What happened to the unfit shoes?
TREES Inc. will be shipping all shoes which are unfit to be worn, to the Nike Reuse Shoe program. Nike grinds the rubber from the shoe's outsole, to make track surfaces, interlocking gym flooring tiles and playground surfacing. The foam from the shoe's midsole is used as a cushion for outdoor basketball and tennis courts, as well as futsal fields. The shoe's fabric upper, is used in the creation of cushioning pads for facilities like indoor synthetic courts and wood courts.
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