Donate Used Shoes to Help Change Lives Around the World…And Here at Home as Well.

Used shoes, we all have them. Heck. I have a wife and 4 daughters. They all have approximately 300 pairs of shoes each (slight exaggeration, maybe). I probably have at least 8 pairs. I have work boots, dress boots, casual boots, 2 pairs of dress shoes, tennis shoes, sandals, no-slip work shoes, and maybe another pair or two i can’t recall off the top of my head. Most of them i rarely, if ever wear. Now we find ourselves at Christmas time and many people will be receiving even more shoes. If only there was a place we could donate some of those old shoes. Well, there is. 

I want to offer a message of hope, especially for you men out there who may be drowning in your wife’s shoe collection. If you are like me, the top of our closet is filled with shoes, there is a rack at the end of the dresser that holds approximately 10 pairs, and some weird contraption that hangs on the back of the bathroom door with another 36 pair.

I’m at a point where i either need a shed in the back yard, a rental semi trailer set in the yard, or a climate controlled storage building to house the untold number of shoes that is constantly growing in my house. That’s just my wife’s collection. I won’t even take the time to regale you with the number of shoes my four daughters have. I’ll just illustrate it like this; I have often had the nightmare (i think it would make a great movie) that some weird asteroid lands in my back yard putting off some weird radiation that causes the shoes in my house to come to life. These shoes then overwhelm my family and take over the earth, like some type of indestructible zombie apocalypse, except with shoes. Yeah, the dream is kinda weird, sorry.

Any way. If you’ve had the same fear, or you’re just in need of some space of your own in the house, i have the perfect news for you. The MOPS group in Ocean Springs desperately wants your used shoes. They will take all of the donated shoes to a group called . This group will pay MOPS for the shoes, repair them and give them to poor families in developing countries who will then sell them to provide a living for their families. Wah-lah! You are instantly a hero, to people in Jackson County, and around the world! A word of caution however. If you decide to donate shoes without your wife’s knowledge, make sure you’re grabbing shoes from the back of the closet, not those nearest the front.

You may ask now, “Who is MOPS, and why do we want to help them?” Great question. It is not some top secret government organization plotting to take over the world via a mutant shoe army (this is the sequel to the first movie). MOPS stands for “Mothers Of Pre Schoolers.” Any mother that has preschool aged children can participate in this group. MOPS serves several functions. They meet twice a month, providing support, encouragement, brunch (childcare provided), mom’s nights out, whole group play dates, as well as service opportunities throughout the year. In essence, they help mothers maintain their sanity while also helping them plug back into the community, with other adults. If you have ever had small children, you know that this ministry probably saves untold thousands of toddler lives every year, as well as preventing thousands of mothers from having to spend time at the “nervous hospital.” Both of those are good for all of us.

Donating shoes will help MOPS better serve the mothers of our community, while also helping people around the world offer a living for their families, and help uplift their communities. If you have shoes you’d like to donate, and we all know you do, the following explains drop off locations and times.

MOPS will be collecting shoes from January 9th-April 9th. The following locations are the collection points:

St. Paul United Methodist Church, East Campus 6716 Bienville blvd, Ocean Springs

St. Paul United Methodist Church, down town campus, 800 Porter Ave. Ocean SPrings

McClendon Medical Clinic, 1161 Robinson St, Ocean Springs.

Please rubber band the shoes together or tie them together with a piece of string (do not tie the shoes laces together in a knot). For more information about the drive you may contact the group directly at [email protected] . You may also check them out on Facebook. They are Ocean Springs MOPS (

For more information about MOPS in general you can visit their website .

So, from the Ocean Springs MOPS group, JaxCoHome, and myself, we wish you the very Merriest Christmas, and a Happy New Year!


Written by Greg Bufkin

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