Every year at Christmastime, Casa de Los Pobres in Tijuana invites 1400 of its client families most in need to a special celebration at which they are given all the makings for a complete Christmas dinner, one child’s gift per family, a blanket, and the most treasured gift of all, a brand new pair of shoes.

Why are the shoes “most treasured”? It’s because, while education for children is compulsory in Mexico, so are school uniforms, including shoes. No uniform shoes, no school. It’s not an exaggeration to say that these shoes allow the children to take their first real steps out of poverty, through education.

But there’s more!

Although we could buy the needed shoes here in the U.S. at a mega discount chain, the Sisters who run Casa de Los Pobres, have come up with a much better solution – better because it addresses two needs at once.

As we all know, the widespread problem in Mexico of severe underemployment has caused many towns to be essentially emptied of their working age men, most of whom have been forced to leave their families behind in desperate search for a way to support them.

The 1400 pairs of shoes the Casa buys each year with funds raised by Friends of the Poor, are purchased from small shoemaking workshops within Mexico, thereby providing those communities with sustainable employment and keeping families together.

Make a donation in honor of a friend or family member

Each $12 donation buys one pair of shoes.