UConn student organizes shoe drive for Cusco, Peru

Any shoes, (excluding heels and snow boots), can be donated, according to Salvi. Shoes for men, women and children are being accepted, given that they are in relatively good condition. (Flickr Creative Commons/Valentin Ottone)

University of Connecticut eighth-semester Physiology and Neurobiology student Sumeet Salvi is organizing a shoe drive for underdeveloped areas in Cusco, Peru.

Any shoes, (excluding heels and snow boots), can be donated, according to Salvi. Shoes for men, women and children are being accepted, given that they are in relatively good condition. 

While there are no plans to collect shoes at UConn as of yet, according to Salvi, collections have already been started in his hometown of Nashua, New Hampshire and he hopes that UConn students will be inspired to donate.

Salvi said he was inspired to start the drive after realizing that the poverty in Cusco was very similar to what he witnessed during his trips to India as a child. According to Salvi, the huge difference in poverty between both countries and the United States startled him and moved him to make a difference in Cusco.

“(An inspiration for this drive) was how much I wanted to give back. I’ve been very lucky to have the life I have been given, from having two caring parents that have given me all of the resources I need to be able to have the great education throughout my life that has helped me to get where I am today,” Salvi said. “I know that everyone does not get this and I really want to find a way to impact people's lives and this is the idea that I came up with.”

Salvi will be traveling to Cusco in Aug. 2018 for an medical internship at the International Volunteering Headquarters, and is collaborating with the company in distributing the shoes during his stay, he said.

“I wanted to do this was because I want the Cusco community to know that we are there for them and will always be willing to help,” Salvi said.


Any students interested in the drive can contact Salvi at Sumeet.salvi@uconn.edu.


Molly Desrochers is a Campus Correspondent for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at molly.desrochers@uconn.edu.