top of page


Have you ever asked yourself the question, “What can I do to make a difference?” At nine years old our founder, Olivia Wright, found herself asking the same thing. The answer to her question came while she was watching a Feed the Children’s commercial with her family. For the first time in her life she saw the kids in the Appalachian Mountains, and saw bare feet and sad faces. In that moment she saw the answer, and a passion was ignited in her young heart, a passion that continues just as strong in what H.U.G.S. is today. A passion now shared by four chapters, many H.U.G.S. ambassadors, and 100,000+  shoe givers. Do you want to know what you can do to make a difference?    It’s simple! Help us gives shoes, and join us on our mission to paint the world with smiles.

Our mission is to give shoes and smiles, we want every pair of shoes to be a personal, life changing experience!



The H.U.G.S. Forthward Home

The name "Forthward" home comes from an idea and quote produced by the mind of the late teen poet, peace maker, and wisdom filled spirit, Mattie J.T. Stepanek.- "Forthward: learning from the past, living in the moment, launching a peaceful future-

without judgment and with

wise choices." H.U.G.S. is

starting an orphanage in

Rajahmundry, India that

is going to house and care

for three street children,

our hearts are full of love

for these special youth, and

we are determined to give them their chance at "Forthward."

holding new shoes.png


It was the Appalachian Mountains that inspired the creation of H.U.G.S., and it's the Appalachian Mountains that we make a trip to at least twice a 


year! We work with our partners at Hills and Hollers to shoe the city of Pine Knots, a city existing in one of the top ten poorest counties in America. While we take multiple shoe trips there, our favorite kind is the back-to-school drives! Without shoes, the children in Pine Knots are not only unable to go to school, their feet are also left vulnerable to broken glass, infection, and other injuries. Whenever shoeing time comes, we set up a line of chairs where the children sit, while we sit on the ground in front of them and find the perfect shoe for each individual child. It's a magical time of connection, and there's smiles all around!

How do I donate my shoes?

Are you close to the Nashville area? If so, let us pick them up from you, your school, or your business!

multiple boxes.jpg

It's all in the package

Once you clean your closet and ship your shoes, the work is in our hands! We work to assure that every pair of shoes is given to soles in need.

Is distance keeping you from giving? Don't fret! We love receiving packages from around the country filled with shoes!

bottom of page