Soles 4 Souls

Hello, my name is Rachel Bigej and I am 16 years old and a junior at Canby High School. I am excited to share my journey with you. When I was in the 4th grade, I wanted to do something that would help others and make a difference. I did some research and found, an organization that not only donates shoes to people in need in the United States and around the world, but is also committed to empowering individuals in extremely poor countries to provide for themselves and their families by starting sustainable small businesses.

Collection Sites

October 1 - 28 at St. Patrick's Catholic Church

October 6 - 28 at Gwynn's Coffee House

October 15 at The Wild Hare

October 8 - 28 at Wilcox Arredondo

October 13 - 28 at Al's Garden & Home

October 15 - 30 at Canby High School/91 School

A pair of shoes can make a powerful impact! It gives kids an opportunity to attend school, gives adults the ability to work, decreases the chance of disease and provides real economic change through small business opportunities for those in developing countries.

My first Shoe Drive in 2012

I decided to hold a shoe drive and collect shoes instead of gifts for my 10th birthday. I gathered shoes through my school, my friends and family and our church. I ended up gathering over 500 pairs of shoes that we shipped to Tennessee, the closest drop off location for Soles4Souls at that time.

This experience changed my life! I was blessed by the support of our entire community and the opportunity to make an impact on the lives of others around the world. It has been my goal to hold another shoe drive and then travel with Soles4Souls to a developing country to distribute the shoes and see first hand the impact it has on their lives.

I am holding a shoe drive during the month of October and would love to collect any gently worn or new shoes you might be willing to donate. I have reached out to Nike and Adidas to see if they might match any donations that I gather.

I will be traveling to the Dominican Republic March 14-19, 2019 to distribute shoes with Soles4Souls at local schools and orphanages. I know that this experience will be life changing and will guide my next steps in serving and helping others. To know that I can make a difference in even one person's life means everything and to empower others in my community to spread kindness and compassion is my goal. Will you partner with me to make a difference in the lives of others?

Rachel Bigej is the great-granddaughter of Al.