Everyone knows TOMS, which is a great company for a number of reasons including inventing the one-for-one model of business and philanthropy. But now there’s a new kid on the block, and they’re kicking ass and taking names. It’s called BucketFeet.
BucketFeet was started and is run by Aaron Firestein and Raaja Nemani and is based in Chicago. The company buys artwork from street artists from all over the world, including the slums of Rio de Janeiro, and puts that artwork on shoes, which they then sell. For every pair of shoes sold, one dollar goes back to the artists and 5 percent of the profits are donated to award winning charities. With an online store and stores stocking them in 27 stores in 15 states, BucketFeet can make a huge difference in the lives of children and artists. The three charities, love.futbol, MAGIC, and Children Mending Hearts, which all benefit impoverished and in-need children through sports, art, or music.
The business benefits children sustainably as BucketFeet isn’t a charity or a donation dependent company, but runs on profits. Because BucketFeet runs sustainably, it’s charities run sustainably without a fear of running out of funds, thats a major win.
Beyond giving back, BucketFeet is also working to build a global community of artists through wearable art. These successful artists also benefit financially and can pursue expanding their artistic influence on the world and fulfill other dreams. BucketFeet also gets free advertisement because its product sells itself. The shoes have an incredible story, history, and social importance that hasn’t been replicated in another shoe company and their designs are unique and stand out.
I love BucketFeet because they use art to change the world and bring people together. Aaron and Raaja use shoes to benefit children in need and help to redefine the significance of art in today’s society. Now, art has a social meaning, both visually and economically, it’s an inanimate object changing the lives of very, very, animate people. BucketFeet has made art come alive.