One good thing about living in urban India is that there are cobblers on every corner who can fix your chappals quickly and for relatively little money. At the same time, pretty much any where you walk you’re bound to see left behind chappals or shoes that broke and someone decided to leave them behind rather than repair them.
But chappals don’t last forever and when they do finally give way, what do you do with them? There’s no waste stream for them. They are usually made of mixed materials so cannot be recycled. They normally go straight to the landfill – approximately 350 billion every year. But now there is a start up that is taking these shoes in and making new chappals with the parts they can recover.
Green Sole has emerged as a company that has a wonderfully circular business. First, they take in donated shoes and chappals and break them apart to use the components they can in building new shoes. Second, they make new chappals from those recycled pieces. And third, they donate “walks” to people who cannot afford to buy shoes themselves.
If you have used chappals and shoes that you can no longer repair and that need to be reincarnated – send them to Green Sole. They accept all shoes except those with heels or those that are children’s sizes. It’s very easy. Just put them in a box and ship them to:
C/O, A460, Ram Fashion Exports
Navi Mumbai- 400701
They also have some collection centres around the country where you can drop off your used shoes.
And if you are in the market for a new pair of chappals – try buying a pair of Green Sole shoes. I just bought a pair and they’re quite good!