Handmade Sandals Provide Opportunities for Education and Jobs

dream sandals handmade in uganda

Although keys are single-purpose items, we are reluctant to throwing them out. We keep them in our junk drawers or on our key rings for the one day we may need them again. Each one is unique in its design and the perfect mate to a lock. Call me an optimist if you’d like, but keys provide access to possibilities, both in the literal and figurative sense.

Following the same hopeful view, The Giving Keys and Sseko Designs have partnered to create Dream Sandals. The 100 percent leather, t-strap sandals are accented with vintage beads and an interchangeable key engraved with “DREAM.”  The person wearing the handmade sandals is supposed to pass along the key at some point to someone else. You then are asked to share your pay-it-forward story on the brand’s websites.

The Dream Sandals are produced by young Ugandan women earning money to attend college. At the end of their nine-month term, Sseko matches their savings with a scholarship. To date, the company has helped 47 girls continue their education and overcome poverty! Caitlin Crosby, the Founder of The Giving Keys, shared in a press release,

We love getting to partner with other organizations making great products and serving people while they’re at it. We chose the word DREAM for this project because there is power in dreams. We want to see people believe in the dream they have and pursue it. We hope that these sandals are a reminder to their wearers to chase after what they want in life. Don’t ever let your dreams die.

But the impact of purchasing these sandals doesn’t end there. Keep reading to learn how this humanitarian-focused brand is changing people’s lives in Los Angeles as well.

Earning a Second Chance

The Giving Keys employs and empowers individuals wanting to transition out of homelessness. They provide hands-on job training and employment, but most of all, help others regain a positive outlook for the future. Fourteen people have been hired since their start. You can support their efforts to help those in the community by purchasing a pair of sandals or donating some of your old keys lying around the house. Find out how you can be a part of this movement to spread hope on Facebook and Twitter, and get a sense of The Giving Keys’ mission and mindset in this video:

What are some other ways you’ve seen keys repurposed or reused? I’d love to hear from you in the comment section.

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