We turn discarded flip-flops into artwork & functional products, which in turn raises visual awareness of the pollution problem at hand.
We are a social enterprise, that upcycles washed up flip-flops found along the beaches and waterways in Kenya. Inspired by the toys children were making out of the flip-flop debris, Julie Church, the Ocean Sole Founder, encouraged their mothers to collect, wash, and cut the discarded flip-flops into colourful products to sell at local Kenyan Markets as another means of income for their families.
Our social enterprise positively impacts over a 1,000 Kenyans through the collection of flip-flops and direct employment. We provide steady income to nearly 100 low-income Kenyans in our company. We aim to recycle a million flip flops year, recycle over one tonne of styrofoam a month, and save over five hundred trees a year - by using flip flops instead of wood. We contribute over 10-15% of our revenue to beach cleanups, vocational and educational programmes as well as conservation efforts.
We use our social enterprise to pay bonuses to employees, invest in a welfare programme that allows a zero return in funds to all employees to help facilitate payments for educating their children, buying land and other means.
People are the heart of our organization. We support equality & are passionate about community impact. We provide meals, healthcare, fair wages, and career advancement & educational opportunities, for not only our employees, but their families as well.
We turn flip-flops into art and functional products and in turn raise visual awareness of the problem at hand. By creating these sculptures, we are creating employment for a country that has over 40% unemployment rate but we are also sending a message about how we can help our planet, our oceans and people, through creating beautiful art that portray an important message about the state of our oceans.
Our business is all about the community. We support men, women, youth (18 to 35), fisherman and other entrepreneurs that are all part of our eco-system. Whether picking up flip-flops that we pay for or using our waste for up-cycled products such as mattresses, our community engagement has been strong and is at the core of our business and hearts.