Skip to main content



So far, your purchases have helped TOMS invest
over $2 million in fighting podoconiosis.

Podoconiosis (podo, for short) is a debilitating disease that causes painful swelling of the feet and legs due to irritants found in certain countries' soils. Podo is easily preventable and treatable with basic foot hygiene and shoes.

Since TOMS Founder Blake Mycoskie encountered people suffering from podo on a 2008 trip to Ethiopia, TOMS has joined professionals in multiple fields to work toward eliminating the disease.

According to the World Health Organization, about 4 million people are infected with podo, and most of them live in Ethiopia.

Since 2008, TOMS has:

  • Advocated for podo's inclusion on the World Health Organization's Neglected Tropical Disease list
  • Supported treatment for over 11,000 Ethiopian podo patients
  • Provided prevention education to over 500,000 at-risk people
  • Supported the formation of Footwork: The International Podoconiosis Initiative
  • Helped hire Ethiopian shoe shiners to make custom shoes for podo sufferers
  • Produced Giving Shoes in Ethiopia since 2009
  • Partnered with IOCC to help Ethiopian children protect themselves from the disease.

Impact Studies

TOMS has invested millions of dollars in partnering with academic and research institutions to conduct studies that gauge the impact our One for One products are having on the ground.

We are currently researching the use of shoes as program participation incentives, shoes as a barrier to soil-transmitted infections like hookworm and the effects of giving away shoes on local economies.

Based on what we learn, TOMS is able to tailor and make changes in how and where we give to have the greatest impact on communities in need.

We recently received the results of our first impact study, conducted in El Salvador by the University of San Francisco. We were pleased to learn the following:

  • Researchers did not find any statistically significant evidence that our shoe giving negatively impacts local shoe markets
  • 90% of the children who received the shoes wore them at least 4 days a week
El Salvador was an ideal location because many children in El Salvador own two or three pairs of shoes, providing greater possibility that the researchers would find a negative impact on local markets as compared to a country in which shoe ownership, and therefore, market purchases, is rare.

Giving Team

TOMS started in 2006, with just two people managing Giving. Since then, we've built a team of more than 20 experienced individuals dedicated to every aspect of giving, including strategic planning, logistical support, program development, communications and impact measurement.

Product Partnerships

We've given millions of dollars to organizations that help those
in need. Our product collaborations allow us to give far more than
shoes. Some of the nonprofits we've helped fund include:

I just helped a person in need by purchasing from TOMS. Join the movement.