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Timberland | Shoes really can change a life

Your used and unloved shoes are given a new purpose thanks to the Timberland Second Chance initiative, in collaboration with Soles4Souls.

By Bicester Village

19 February 2020

“Reusing old products to obtain new ones not only saves non-renewable resources but is also a way of giving things a new value,” says Timberland of its motivation behind relaunching its Second Chance initiative this year – which asks people to donate their gently used shoes, whatever the brand, and shares them with countries in need.

“In the three years since launching the Second Chance initiative, we’ve found that the majority of donated shoes have been in a very good condition and so it was better to clean them and repair slightly, if needed, than to destroy and recycle,” explains the brand. “This way they’re given a chance to find another life, and we can provide shoes to those in need.”

What’s new for 2020 is the American brand has teamed up with non-profit organisation Soles4Souls, which offers the chance for greater distribution across the world, meaning even more feet can be clad in second-hand footwear.

Sustainability has been part of Timberland’s DNA since its foundation. Committed to doing its part, the brand has launched several sustainable efforts, including turning old car tyres into rubber soles and plastic bottles into fabric. “It’s estimated that by 2030 the global production of clothes will grow by 63% – this means even more waste into landfills and an even greater strain on the environment if we do not recycle more” the brand adds.

The Second Chance programme was first launched in 2017, across 17 countries, and has since collected 3,000 kilograms of shoes – that’s approximately 5,200 pairs! “We’ve had great success and that’s why we’ve decided to relaunch the project and spread a sense of urgency in creating a lifecycle for shoes.”

How to make a donation

In the Timberland boutique you’ll find a box in which to place your used (but still in good condition) shoes. Once you’ve dropped them off, Soles4Souls will send them around the world to those who need them, and you’ll receive a reward for your generosity.

Don’t forget to drop your unwanted shoes into the Second Chance box in the Timberland boutique when you visit.