Donate Shoes To Help Provide Safe Drinking Water


663 million people – 1 in 10 – lack access to safe water, according to the World Health Organization and UNICEF.

That’s why, for the sixth consecutive year, The Iona Group and Float, in partnership with St. Ann’s WATCH program, are co-sponsoring a shoe drive from August 1-31 throughout central Illinois.

“The Peoria area community has been absolutely terrific over the past five years that our team has been running this shoe collection drive. Once again, I ask individuals and organizations to help. We need your help bringing in your pairs of shoes; whatever condition those shoes may be in, this shoe drive will take them. Also we need your help getting the word out; tell your friends, neighbors, coworkers; the more shoes we collect, the better off our local landfills will be and the shoes collected will benefit those who are most in need,” said Tom Marchal, President and CEO of Iona and Float.

All new and used dry shoes collected – flip-flops, sandals, tennis shoes, clogs, dress shoes, garden shoes, etc. – will be donated to WaterStep with several purposes in mind. The shoes are sold in large quantities to a distributor, and the money raised is used by WaterStep to fund water treatment systems in third-world countries. Of those donated shoes, usable shoes will be sold by local merchants in poorer regions of the world. The funds raised will help these merchants provide a sustainable living for their families. Additionally, recipients of these shoes will be protected from abrasions, parasites and mites.

WaterStep is an organization focused on providing safe and reliable drinking water all over the world.

This nonprofit organization’s mission is to help many of the world’s problems by providing access to clean water.

By using their own water treatment systems, offering health and hygiene education, and training people going into areas with unclean water about how to do water projects, WaterStep provides more people with access to clean water and sanitation.

Since 2012, with the support of the local community, nearly 100,000 pairs of shoes have been donated to this worthwhile endeavor, resulting in safe drinking water for thousands of people worldwide.

Volunteers are being asked to host a drop-off box at their organization. When their organization’s box is full, they can bring the shoes during business hours to the drop-off trailer set up at Iona and Float’s office at 620 West Jackson Street in Morton. If you would like more information, call Denise Henderson at 309-263-4662 or send an email to

Shoe donations will be accepted from August 1 – 31, 2017, at these locations:

Organization NameAddressCityPhone