On any given night in New York City, approximately 60,000 homeless men, women and children live in one of the many shelters spread across the five boroughs. As a nod to those 60,000 people, New York City based sock company Bombas organized 60K Day, a special event held on February 28th. CUCS was selected as a partner for 60K Day, receiving donations and a dozen enthusiastic volunteers.
Bombas, a buy-one-give-one company, was founded by two friends who discovered the most requested clothing item at homeless shelters: socks. Since its inception in 2015, Bombas has donated more than two million pairs of socks to shelters and programs helping the homeless. This year, they made it their mission to donate 60,000 pairs of socks to 60 shelters in just one night.
During the event, professionals from 60 major companies based in New York and New Jersey fanned out across the city to volunteer, learn, and deliver thousands of pairs of socks to those most in need.
CUCS hosted 12 volunteers from Hello Products and Paypal at the Kelly, a transitional living community in West Harlem. The volunteers delivered 2,000 pairs of Bombas socks, 600 tubes of all-natural toothpaste, and lots of enthusiasm! Volunteers also created welcome packages for incoming clients and organized a closet full of donated clothing.
The Kelly transitional housing program provides transitional living and supportive services to around 40 men and women with a history of homelessness and mental illness. Carol Allette, Program Director for the Kelly, was excited to have the volunteers and receive the donations saying, “Without a doubt, every single client who walks into the doors is in need of a clean pair of socks.”
Numerous CUCS programs received boxes of socks and toothpaste donated on 60K Day, including our Street Medicine and Street Outreach teams. Erica Strang, CUCS’ Street Outreach Program Director, was able to hand out socks to clients during the recent snowstorms. She explained how nice it was to have something concrete to offer clients and to make an immediate difference in how they were feeling.
A pair of socks might seem like a very small act in a situation as complicated as homelessness, but according to Greggory Mendenhall, Program Director at Delta Manor transitional housing program, “A simple thing like a pair of socks and some toothpaste can be the first step to initiating a connection and focusing on providing a new start.”
CUCS is proud to have been a part of 60K Day and would like to extend another big thank you to Bombas, Hello Products and Paypal for their support!