It’s difficult for most of us to imagine spending a Christmas alone on the streets, isolated from our friends and family, struggling to stay warm. Sadly, this is the reality for too many. In 2018 over 24,000 people in the UK faced a homeless Christmas. One quarter of them were in London.
The London Sock Company annual sock Amnesty aims to spread some warmth and positivity during the winter season by donating thousands of pairs of warm socks to the homeless in partnership with charity Crisis.
“Socks are probably the most important item of clothing we receive and are able to provide,” Alan at Crisis told LSC at the charity’s distribution centre in Dagenham, when members of the LSC team were helping sort through donations. “We take for granted that we are able to wash our socks every day. A lot of our guests are not able to do this, so their socks get dirty, unhygienic and damp. This is not only uncomfortable, it can affect people’s foot health and lead to other serious problems.”
Working with their manufacturer, LSC had thousands of pairs of extra-warm, comfortable and durable socks made especially for Crisis to distribute to the homeless guests at their day centres. Last year, London Sock Company was able to donate 6,000 pairs. This year, they have already donated 7,000 pairs. With up to 150 people potentially receiving clothes from a day centre daily, including several pairs of socks, it will take just one week to distribute 7,000 pairs. That is why they need your help to donate even more socks!
If you received unwanted socks for Christmas, or you’ve watched Tidying Up with Marie Kondo on Netflix and decided that your old socks just don’t spark joy in you any more, now you can donate them to a really great cause.
Here’s what you do.
1. Sign Up Online
Go to the London Sock Co website and enter your email address. London Sock Co will then send you a freepost label and a £5 voucher to spend on their website. If you decide to buy something right away they’ll include a freepost donation bag in your delivery.
2. Empty Your Sock Drawer
Unwanted socks from Christmas? Odd socks resigned to the back of the drawer? Your favourite pair now threadbare? London Sock Co. will take them.
If your socks are unworn, they’ll be donated straight to homeless feet. If you’ve worn them, they’ll recycle the socks and donate any proceeds.
3. Send Your Socks
If you have bought something, pop your socks in the freepost bag. If not, download and attach the freepost label to any secure package and send your socks to them. They do the rest.
It really is as simple as that. It’s by no means a solution to homelessness, but it’s important not to underestimate the positive impact the gift of clean, fresh socks can make to someone in need.