42,263 shoes collected since inception
2,851 pairs of shoes collected in the 2015/2016 school year
From 1933-1945, more than 11 million people perished at Nazi concentration, extermination, and slave labor camps, and by
ethnic cleansing (ghetto elimination).
The 11 million include: 1.5 million children, 200,000 handicapped civilians, countless millions of Russian, Serbian, and Polish citizens, 10,000 to 15,000 homosexuals, 1,500 Roman Catholic clergy, 1,000 Jehovah’s Witnesses, more than 500,000 Romanis (Gypsies), and more than 6,000,000 Jews.
When Allied troops liberated Nazi Germany’s concentration camps, the soldiers found thousands of shoes in huge piles. The shoes belonged to the men, women, and children who had lost their lives in those death camps.
The Holocaust Shoe Project's genesis came from those images. We are a grassroots campaign that focuses on Holocaust awareness and provides a lesson for turning human cruelty into redemptive acts of kindness.