Even small gifts change lives

Pay It Forward

Stepping Up to the Challenge

Bell Bank employees in the Twin Cities volunteered to help provide shoes for children in Uganda.

“This project brought our team together for the ‘sole’ purpose of helping others. We started with a competitive atmosphere between us to see who could be most productive, but in the end, we bound together as a team to help each other. We hope our efforts contribute toward improving the lives of the recipients!” – Chris Klohn, commercial lender


Men, women and children in Uganda

The Need

Many children in Uganda do not have shoes and have to run barefoot. The problem is this makes them prone to jiggers – parasites that burrow into the feet and lay eggs, leading to infection, disease and sometimes amputation.

The Impact

Members of Bell’s Twin Cities team decided to help by holding a shoe-making party. Volunteers cut out pieces of used denim and plastic milk jugs for Sole Hope, a nonprofit organization that supplies shoes to Ugandan children and provides a sustainable income for Ugandan men and women by hiring them to make shoes from the donated materials. Sole Hope also provides medical supplies to treat jiggers.

Bell volunteers cut enough denim and plastic to help assemble 70 pairs of shoes. They also donated $700 to sponsor the shoes. Sole Hope needs $10 for each pair of shoes for additional supplies, shipping the materials and paying the tailors and shoemakers to assemble the shoes.

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