SOLEdiers® Veterans Program
SOLEdiers® was created to honor GHS Founder Nick’s grandfather, a WWII veteran and extremely patriotic man. When the program first began in 2014, veterans living on or below the poverty line and their children received gift cards to shoe retailers so they could select their own footwear. 650 veterans in Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and Florida received these gift cards.
Since then, we've partnered with VA Hospitals across the country to expand the program nationwide.
As a young boy, Nick would spend hours listening to his grandfather tell stories of how his experiences shaped him into the man he is today. A WWII veteran and the youngest of 5 in a very poor family, his clothing and shoes were always hand-me-downs that were too big for him. His shoes were stuffed with tissue and cardboard to cover holes in the soles, so his feet could stay dry in the rain. Nick listened to these stories with a heavy heart, saddened by how his grandfather lived as a boy. Nick wished he could have given him new shoes as a boy. It is this heartache that continues to inspire Nick's work.