Vans Donates 10,000 Pairs of Shoes

Do we look like Vans' skateboarders?

Vans employees touring the RV

We were honored to visit the Vans corporate office and meet Steve Van Doren and Jenny Lamott. Vans donated 10,000 pairs of shoes to survivors and volunteers of the Haiti earthquake as part of an industry-wide relief effort mounted by Soles4Souls. Jenny gave us a tour of the building, which conveyed the “edgy” appeal of Vans products. They even have an indoor skateboard half-pipe where their staff, athletes and spokespeople try out their cool skateboarding moves. Jenny gave Allan, Sondra and me Vans T-shirts, so we posed in what we consider cool skateboard moves. (Don’t expect us to be Vans athletes anytime soon!) I shared with the Vans’ staff how a boy in a remote village in El Salvador came up to us as we distributed shoes and asked “Vans? Vans?” Evidently Vans shoes have impacted kids in places where electricity and running water don’t exist.
Later that evening, I met a 12-year-old boy at a shoe distribution. We only had a pair of boots in his size. He politely explained that he had bad feet and needed to wear orthodics. He described how his only pair of shoes, (well-worn Vans!) held his orthodics in place perfectly. After a quick e-mail to Jenny, she assured me a new pair of Vans would be sent to his house. That’s customer service!

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