Ryerson University in Toronto had a new vending machine installed on campus this week, but it's not selling snacks or drinks — it's selling socks. And, the story of the machine goes beyond just that.
Though it's not the first sock vending machine in the world, it is perhaps the first one for a greater good.
For every $10-$12 pair of socks someone purchases, they will get a free pair to give to the homeless in Toronto, which they can either hand-deliver to an individual or place in a receptacle for a non-profit to distribute.
The project is the brainchild of Marissa Sheff, who started a charitable organization called Sock Footage to help keep the city's most vulnerable population's feet warm and dry.
Socks are some of the most essential, but least donated items.
The machine extends Sock Footage's mandate to donate a pair of socks, through partners like Socks 4 Souls Canada, to those in need, which it already does through its website.
The machine in Ryerson's Podium Building is stocked with quirky pairs from NYC-based HotSox, with patterns ranging from stripes to Sriracha bottles, from pints of beer to bacon and eggs.
It will remain a fixture of the downtown campus for the next year.
by Becky Robertson via blogTO