Making children smile!

Hi Friends! Thank you for taking a moment to read on about my upcoming trip to Guatemala. This year for my birthday, on August 19th thru August 23rd, I will be going on a volunteer service trip to 4 orphanages in Guatemala with an AWESOME organization, Soles4Souls! I would love your help and participation in what I am certain is to be an incredible journey! Help me spread a little extra joy! 

Some Background: I am extremely fortunate to work for a socially conscious global organization that supports internal efforts to help those in need. Last year, with the help of my amazing colleagues, I ran a multi-city shoe drive out of our New York, Toronto, San Diego and Santa Monica Offices for Soles4Souls. In less than one month, we collected over 500 pairs of shoes and an abundance of clothes donations as well!! It was an incredibly rewarding experience for me and I have as a result stayed connected to the organization based on the truly amazing work they do.

Soles4Soles collects new shoes to give relief to the victims of abject suffering and collects used shoes to support micro-business efforts to eradicate poverty. Soles4Souls’ other two divisions, Clothes4Souls and Hope4Souls, provide the same relief and support through clothing and other necessities.  With the simple gift of shoes you are protecting people from illnesses and allowing kids to attend school. It also creates sustainable jobs and support for those recovering from disaster.  Please check out the Soles4Souls organization at as well as the video below!

The organization extends to its fundraisers the opportunity to travel with them to actually deliver the shoes to the children in need the most. In just a few short weeks, I will be blessed with the chance to see the shoes that me and my colleagues helped to gather, being fully expressed in the most simplest of ways. We will gently wash their feet, size them and give EVERY child in 4 different orphanages a new pair of their very own shoes - for so many it will be their very first!!

With that said, I have personally already covered all of the costs of making this trip happen for myself. Today, I am asking for help for a different reason. In 1998, when I traveled around the world, I volunteered in orphanages in over 5 different countries. On those trips, I brought with me many items to give to the children and I can say with the utmost honesty, that those experiences were some of the most pure, joy filled moments of my life. Special gifts to them are often the items we most take for granted. Hair clips, ponytail holders, pencils, markers, notebooks, journals, balls, nail polish, flavored lip balm, jump rope, games, brushes, combs, rubber or stretch bracelets, crayons, coloring books, reading books... the ideas are endless and the chance to facilitate the joy and excitement such gifts will bring to the amazing children I am about to meet gets me beyond excited!!!! 

Do you want to help? I think there is something really special about participating in this with me. For although I will be making the trip, your contribution will help to bring a deeper, collective energy of love and compassion from my very own friends and family to the efforts I give in Guatemala. I know we often can have a desire to help others, but we are not always sure if our specific efforts will actually touch a life. Here is your chance to journey with me, to be certain that your effort, however small, made it that much more possible for me to create the impact we all wish we could have! Please donate here to help me get enough items for all the children. Donations of actual goods are also welcome and encouraged! 

You can contact me here or via FB for any additional information or for my mailing address for the donation of specific items. All goods will need to be received in Santa Monica, CA no later than August 15th. Also, any additional funding to this effort will go directly to additional donations to Soles4Souls and the individual schools and orphanages in Guatemala. 

Thank you all for being in my life, for loving me and supporting me. I am genuinely grateful for any help you want to give this effort. I am already truly blessed and together I hope we can create new blessings for so many sweet and innocent children in Guatemala who I am sure need a smile or two! 

Check out this awesome picture of smiling kids who just received shoes -- and help me by adding your contribution to that kind of awesomeness!!

With Love and Gratitude, Kristan 

  • Carol Genduso 
    • 25 $ 
    • 83 mos
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    • 20 $ 
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    • 100 $ 
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  • Abbey & Nathan Ziv 
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Kristan Toth 
Santa Monica, CA
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