Tuesday, September 8, 2009

It's Our Flip Flop Anniversary!

September 6 marked our one year anniversary and I have to say, managing this from our humble home and with minimal time and resources, we feel so blessed by the wonderful things that have taken place over the last year and by the many people who have done so much for others. Over 3,000 pairs in a year! Here's how Olivia feels about it!

There are a few things that have changed - I simply can't keep up on who is an "official" flip flop "friend" or "fan" and the bottom line is that shoes (and undies) get to the people who need them, so it really doesn't matter whether someone donates 50 pair or ONE pair. I think that anyone who has been a part of this mission in the past year will agree with what this verse says, "In all things I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’” Acts 20:35

I am behind on blogging my updates! I promise to get caught up soon! We have some exciting stories to share, including shoes that went to India, to land on the feet of children who have never owned or worn shoes before.

Please keep your eyes open for deals - this is the time of year that shoes start getting clearanced out. Last year we had great luck with Walgreens - they marked their flips down to .49 and when we asked if we bought them all if they would give them to us for .25, time after time, city after city and state after state they agreed. Don't bother with Target as the management does not have the authority to reduce the price. If anyone else finds a deal, please leave a comment!

Thursday, July 2, 2009


A recent Flip Flopper, Stacie, came across our blog and decided that not only did she want to get on board, she wanted to get her church involved! She set a goal of 400 pair in 40 days. Amazingly, the total brought in was 1134!! This ALMOST doubles what we had over eight months of work. God gets all the credit in Stacie's eyes, but we also know that she was totally dedicated to the cause! Thanks, Stacie, for your amazing efforts and thanks be to God for the many ways he has blessed this endeavor and the people involved. If you would like to talk to your church about a Flip Flop Drive, please email us!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Bra Recycling in the U.K.

(Click here if you can't see the embedded video.)

See? We aren't the only ones doing this! In case you were wondering, the Flip Flop Fleet isn't just collecting shoes. We're also collecting bras and underwear for those living in developing countries. Just something to keep in mind the next time you go through your closet.

Friday, June 5, 2009

We Need Shoes!

Can you please help? We are running out of shoes. I know there are some out there who have a collection of them - could you tell me who you are and how many you have? We have people going to Guatemala, India and Haiti soon and I need your help. We are taking more that just flip flops - sandals, tennies, and dress shoes of all sizes for both genders.

It is garage sale season and I have been able to get some shoes for free (just tell them what you are doing and ask if they are willing to donate them) or for very little. Kids grow out of shoes so quickly that often they are in excellent shape. There are often adult shoes in great shape, too. There was a time where we had a ton of shoes and needed ways for shoes to get to other countries and now we have sources and a dwindling supply of Resources.

Pleeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaaase won't you help?

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Final Counts for the Final Lap

OH MY WORD I am so behnd but it has been mayhem around here with the referral, a baby shower, friends in town for the baby shower, work deadlines, etc.

Here are the final numbers for the UNDY 500. It is kind of a bummer - we were close but missed our goal of 500 by 89. The grand total was 411. Thanks to everyone who contributed! We are continuing our collection of these items, so let me know if you have any!!

Sunday, May 24, 2009


I am waaaay behind here...didn't blog that Old Navy had flip flops for $1 yesterday...haven't blogged our Undy 500 updates...BUT I have a really good excuse!! We FINALLY got our referral from China for Olivia Xiu Di Shelton! It has been a crazy couple of days! WOOHOO! Here she is:I will be posting a final Undy 500 count soon. I don't think we made our goal, but I have a few people getting numbers to me by end of day today, so we will see. For more pictures and info on Olivia, click HERE. Thanks for all the emails on Old Navy! Sorry I dropped the ball this time...

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

We're Cruisin'

Ok, folks! We got 35 more items in the last 24 hours! We have 28 pairs of undies and 7 bras added! Thanks and keep 'em comin'!! We don't want to crash and burn!!
We have had a variety of questions - here are some answers:
  • We will take any decent quality used bras or undies. We have still been receiving feedback that this is strange (the USED part). I will say this again, PEOPLE NEED UNDERWEAR. We are talking about the poorest of the poor. We are blessed to have made some wonderful connections with people who work with and serve the poorest of the poor. At the Flip Flop Fleet, our mission is to serve the poorest of the poor.
  • Mens, womens, kids. ALL sizes.

  • No to g-strings, but thank you anyway :)
  • We will take new skivvies, of course!
  • We will take items from the dollar store (thanks for that tip - I didn't know they had these items) Any skivvies are better than no skivvies.

  • We don't need your items sent to us by Sunday, we just want to know your "counts"

I will leave you with this picture. This is what the "mall" looks like in Haiti.

Monday, May 18, 2009

The Undy 500 Needs Ya!

Our count is s-l-o-w-l-y growing...but we need more! We would like to make our goal of 500 items by May 24, race day.
We have received 20 more bras and 35 more undies
Here is our current count: 133 bras and 162 undies
This brings our Undy 500 total to 295 - EEK! Without your help we won't make it! We need 205 more items by Sunday to make our goal...I bet you have items in your own dresser that you don't wear...if not, can you hit the thrift store or Target? Please help us make our goal. If you have items, please leave a comment or email us. THANKS!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

More Flips Delivered in Malawi!

Our new friends, Max and Cay, sent us these pictures of some girls and their headmaster at a school in Malawi, receiving our flip flops! We just love to see this! We are grateful to all those collecting and delivering shoes!
Thank you!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

The Second Lap...

59 more bras and 76 more undies!
So totals are 113 bras and 127 undies.
THAT means that we have 240 items so far to a goal of 500! THAT means that we only need 260 more and we have 14 more days to do it! Race day is May 24! Vroom, Vroom! So jump in the driver's seat and let's keep the "drive" going!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

The First Lap...

First day totals: 54 Bras and 51 Undies!! Woohoo!!

Gear Up for the Undy 500!

Vroom, vroom! Let's come together for the UNDY 500! We want to collect 500 undies (tops or bottoms, if ya catch the drift) by race day, SUNDAY, MAY 24. See the post below if you have missed what we are up to!

Feel free to post this on your blogs and email your friends! Email us at flipflopfleet@gmail.com with your numbers and we will figure out where those skivvies should go!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009


We are introducing a new division of the Flip Flop Fleet - The Skivvy Divvy. What is this, you ask? Well, it’s an opportunity to clean out your closet or your underwear drawer while helping those in developing countries!
After traveling to Haiti, we learned that there is another great need - UNDIES. A few of my friends have wrinkled up their noses at me when I tell them that we are going to start collecting underwear, but the thrift stores sell them, so if it's good enough for the thrift stores, it is good enough for us. Our goal is to collect new or nice quality used undies and bras of all types and sizes for the poorest of the poor in developing countries.

EVERYONE has a pair that rides up on them that they just don’t wear and EVERY woman has at least one bra that is in the drawer that they NEVER wear. Instead of tossing them, divvy your skivvies to The Skivvy Divvy!
So, as you are doing your spring cleaning, if you come across any of these items or if you feel led to buy some, please email us at flipflopfleet@gmail.com. As always, if you purchase flip flops, please email us so we can add your total to our shoe counter and keep track of who has what. We have more and more people going to countries where shoes and undies are greatly needed. We need you on board!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Flip Flops arrive in Ethiopia and Malawi!

A family adopting from Ethiopia took some of our flip flops when they went to get their daughter! Here is a quote from them: "The staff at the orphanage were SO THANKFUL for those shoes. They just couldn't stop thanking us enough. I tried to explain who these flip flops were really from, but I don't think they got it. Those kids were in DESPERATE need of these shoes. So feel good about that."

We met a lovely Australian couple in Haiti and now they are in Malawi. They took shoes with them, too. Cay helped me hand out shoes in Haiti and was very helpful!

Here is a quote from Cay: The folk on the steps showing their flip flops are the staffers at the Lydia Foundation in Zomba, Malawi and they send their heartfelt thanks as do the 3 orphan girls.
Please, take just a moment and click on this picture to enlarge it to really see the expressions on these happy faces! Acts 20:35 states,"In all things I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.'" Indeed!

Friday, April 10, 2009

New Connections, New Blessings!

I don't believe in coincidences. We met some amazing people in Haiti and made some great connections with people who are excited to get flip flops to those in great need. Here is one of the wonderful women we met at the Port-au-Prince airport on our way home. Her name is Michelle Lacourciere and she is the Director for the Sirona Cares Foundation. If you click HERE you can see what Sirona Fuels is doing for countries like Haiti. She was kind enough to do a post about the Flip Flop Fleet on her blog and she is excited about taking flip flops with her when she heads to Haiti in May! Here is a quote from her email that put a smile on my face from EAR TO EAR!! "I will gladly accept whatever you can send to me and will happily put them on the feet of beautiful children."

Another interesting point is that Sirona Fuels partners with C3 Missions, who we donated flips to after the flooding last fall. We plan to continue to work with C3 in the future as well.

Thank you, Lord, for blessing us with partnerships like this one. We know that meeting Michelle and her lovely family was not an accident.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Blessings Abound!

Please click HERE for a wonderful post by our online friend, Cara. Lee found this blog before we ever knew about Patricia and Philippe. I remember him saying as he read their posts, "Hmmm, maybe we should adopt from Haiti some day!

Thanks Cara and Greg, for educating us on Haiti, for sharing this great shopping story and for 61 more pairs of flip flops!

Monday, March 30, 2009

1600 Pair!

Here at the Flip Flop Fleet, our shoe count has been stuck at 1593 pairs of shoes for months!Jennifer over at God Sees and Protects decided enough was enough and got us 7 more pair so we now have an even 1600! Thanks, Jennifer!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Flip Flops in Haiti!!!

We brought 200 pairs of flip flops to the kids' orphanage for the kids and the staff. Here are the kids all lined up ready to get new shoes.

Snazzy new pair of orange flip flops

I got pretty good at guessing what size shoe would fit what size foot!

Here are the nannies and other orphanage staff getting their new flip flops. It touched my heart when a few of the men refused shoes for themselves and took a small size for their child at home. I wished that every staff member could take shoes home for all their kids, too!

This says it all!

Just a sampling of the large group that got new flip flops! Thanks to everyone collecting shoes! We made some other great connections in Haiti, and your efforts are blessing and will continue to bless others!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

"The flip flops were a hit!"

The title quotes Dr. Hess regarding the Flip Flop Fleet's contribution to his recent trip to Honduras.

Thank you Dr. Hess for partnering with us to get some shoes to people in need in Honduras!

And thank you to everyone who has donated shoes. We have many more places we could be taking these shoes, let's keep watching for opportunities!

Stay tuned for some more reports of Flips going to people in need... isn't this fun? My favorite part of all of this is seeing the smiles.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Flip Flops on their way to HONDURAS!!

Lee used to be an optician several years ago, and one of the doctors he worked for went on annual trips to other countries on VOSH Missions Trips. In the past 25 years, he as visited approximately 30 countries helping people to see better! He is currently the VOSH Minnesota president.
From their website: VOSH Minnesota is an organization dedicated to serving the vision needs of people around the world who cannot afford or do not have access to vision care services. We are an independent volunteer group of optometrists and other concerned individuals who travel around the globe to help provide better sight to those less fortunate.
I was talking to Dr. Hess about the Flip Flop Fleet and since they already had shipped their needed items for their current trip, he was happy to take flip flops with him to HONDURAS! He took 75 pair and the wonderful thing about flips is that they are so light that the box, which needed to weigh 50 lbs or less, weighed only 35 lbs. He said that someone once donated baseball caps and when they handed them out the people were so happy! We are praying that our flip flops bring many blessings!
Think creatively - there are many people going on missions trips of all types this time of year and we have great opportunities to get these shoes on some feet! Will you ask your church if there are any teams going out to areas in need? Please let us know if we can help!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Please Be Thinking...

Ask your church if they are sending any teams to other countries for missions trips...keep your eyes and ears open for unique opportunities...there are people travelling all the time and maybe they can take some FLIP FLOPS with them! Don't assume that it will be a burden for them to do so...many groups are collecting items to take anyway, and it is actually a help to them. Also, flip flops are lightweight and easy to pack.
Please be thinking and email us at flipflopfleet@gmail.com if you have news of anyone who can take some shoes with them. If you hear of a group travelling but would rather that we contact them, let us know that as well!

Thursday, January 15, 2009


Hey all you Flip Floppers out there, here's the thing. Lots of people have been saying, "Hey, have you heard of Souls for Soles? They are taking all those shoes that they found on the highway in Florida down to Haiti". Yes, I have heard of them. As soon as we launched the Fleet, people told me about them. All the time. People then ask if we are going to continue to do what we do, when there are other groups doing the same thing. The answer is a loud, YES, WE ARE!! I am actually puzzled by the fact that people ask this! I think it is great that there are other organizations helping, but I don't think that means we stop doing what WE are doing!! So YES. We are still going to collect shoes. We are still going to work with orphanages, missions teams and families traveling to Haiti, Guam, Ecuador, Ethiopia, WHEREVER shoes are needed! ONWARD AND UPWARD!!