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Socktober: give warm socks to the homeless

Why we sent new socks to homeless people in Europe and how you can make a difference...

Have you ever wondered what kind of life your socks have? They follow you everywhere, unnoticed, until one day, they are too worn and end up in the trash. We don’t blame you, they had a good life.

The power of socks

Because of their draining life, socks hardly ever get donated - let alone donated new - to those in need. Yet they are one of the most needed items for homeless people: they have to be replaced more often to ensure warm, dry feet and avoid infections.

And they’re comforting. Who doesn’t love the feeling of a clean pair of socks?

Everybody has a story to tell

Socks can also act as a powerful tool to engage with people who are often ignored.

Mark Horvath, who created the organisation Invisible People, uses them as an icebreaker before interviewing homeless people across the U.S. According to him , “By handing out socks, you’re helping with a genuine need and creating a nonverbal connection that says, “You know something about homelessness. You care.”

Give socks and attention

If you’ve walked by a homeless person in your neighbourhood thinking “How could I help?”, start with socks. And take a good listen. Each person has a story worth telling and one worth hearing. It’s not just about warming their feet – it’s also about treating them with respect and compassion. And listening.

Have you ever wondered what kind of life they had before ending up on the street? Ask. Listen. Help.

And if you don’t have homeless people in your neighbourhood but still want to help, we’ve put together a map of organisations where you can donate socks, clothes, money or even volunteer. Find one close to you and help us fight homelessness.

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