How we do business is as important as how much business we do.
That has always been – and always will be -- a core belief of Caleres. Whether it’s supporting our communities through donations and volunteerism, awarding grants to deserving organizations through our Caleres Cares charitable trust, or taking steps every day to contribute to the health of our planet, we take our commitment to social responsibility seriously.
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In 1921, our founder, George Warren Brown, established a trust to provide funds to worthy charitable organizations. Ever since, giving back has been a part of our culture.
On a national level, we are a long standing major benefactor of the annual QVC Presents FFANY Shoes on Sale event, raising millions for breast cancer research. Our ongoing partnership with The Two Ten Footwear Foundation, which provides emergency financial assistance and scholarships for members of the U.S. footwear industry, is critical to our commitment not only to giving back, but to serving those who make our industry what it is. In 2018 our associates donated more than $360,000 to the Two Ten effort.
Caleres supports the industry's Soles4Souls initiative through the donation of new and used pairs of shoes, providing over 70,000 pairs that have been distributed to various disaster relief zones and developing countries.
In every city where we do business, we are part of the community. Through our nearly 1,000 Famous Footwear stores around the country, we are a proud partner of the March of Dimes Foundation March for Babies and have raised more than $22 million to help fund research to prevent birth defects and premature birth.
Caleres Cares, our charitable trust, matches every dollar donated by an associate to an eligible non- profit up to $20,000 per Associate per year. To date, Caleres has donated over $850,000 to over 280 charitable organizations. In addition to financial contributions, we also give our time.
Our associates have dedicated thousands of hours to local volunteerism to support not only United Way, March Of Dimes, and the Two Ten Footwear Foundation, but other organizations that are important to them. As a company, we encourage and applaud those who give of themselves for causes about which they are passionate, by contributing $10/ hour for every hour an associate gives to an eligible community service organization.
Although our business is global, we always remember that our company was born and made in St. Louis, which still serves as our worldwide headquarters. Over the years, we have given more than $20 million to the St. Louis community through our support of the United Way of Greater St. Louis as well as multiple educational and cultural institutions that enrich the fabric of our hometown.
Our Five Funding Priorities
We encourage 501 (C)(3) tax- exempt non profit organizations to apply for a Caleres Cares grant by clicking the link below. Note that grants are not made to individuals. The Caleres Cares Charitable Trust Distribution Committee meets quarterly to consider all qualified applications. March 31, June 30, September 30 and December 31 are the deadlines for submitting grant proposals to be considered at the following quarterly meeting.
Our mission is to support charitable organizations, which
- Strategically align with our mission, vision and values
- Focus on advancing the footwear industry
- Benefit the overall St. Louis community in growing and attracting new businesses and residents
Organizations we support must be good corporate citizens and have a targeted focus on our corporate mission to live better feet first by
- Helping develop stronger families by providing opportunities for enrichment
- Encouraging individuals to live better lives through health and wellness effort
- Providing occasions for families and individuals to step feet first into the arts and cultural opportunities in the community
The Trust generally does not support special events such as galas, walks, golf outings, trivia nights, etc. Applicants will be asked to supply information about their organization, key leadership, details about their request, the impact they expect the grant to have on their organization or community, and how they will measure success.
Please note the online application requires the following attachments
- Current year’s operating budget
- List of board member
- Program or project budget (if applicable).
Attachments can be in Microsoft Word, Excel or Adobe PDF format. Please do not include compressed ZIP files.
Making a difference and giving back goes beyond charitable efforts. It also means playing our part in ensuring the health of our planet for generations to come. We’re passionate about making the world a better place and excited to be on the journey toward sustainability. And it’s exactly that – a journey. We are learning new things each day that inspire our teams to change their approach. We’re moving quickly to adopt new ways of seeing and doing, including:
Using 3D printing technology to reduce the number of samples made and shipped
Choosing partners whose values and practices align with ours, including having all required environmental permits, approvals, and registrations, and who properly dispose of all waste generated from their operations
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Sourcing materials from tanneries belonging to the Leather Working Group (LWG) a multi-stakeholder group that assesses the environmental compliance and performance capabilities of leather manufacturers and promotes sustainable and appropriate environmental business practices
Increasing use of recycled materials
Setting standards with suppliers to identify and use textile Materials that have been produced using at least 20% recycled yarn
Increasing use of fabrics that contain more natural fibers vs. synthetic based compositions
Lowering the use of dimethylformamide (DMF), a solvent used in production of synthetic leathers
Removing plastic from all Caleres packaging, resulting in nearly 175 million square inches of plastic sheeting saved, totaling 5,700 pounds of plastic waste reduction.
Reducing the amount of paper used to create our shoe boxes
Recycling used corrugate at our distribution centers, with an average of over 2,220 tons of corrugate recycled annually
Achieving LEED Gold Certification at our Caleres 1 and Caleres 2 distribution centers in Chino, California, and LEED Platinum Certification at the Vionic Group headquarters office building in San Rafael, California
Dr. Scholl’s Shoes recently introduced three sneakers that are crafted with sustainable, eco-conscious materials. Outsoles use a rice husk to reduce the use of rubber, which is made with petroleum. Midsoles have an algae-based EVA taken from environments in the US and China where the algae is suffocating fish, plants, and other microorganisms living in the water. Fabric and laces are made of 100% recycled bottles, eyelets are recyclable, leather is re-purposed and chrome-free, and linings are 100% cotton, which is decomposable, unlike polyester.
In addition to shoe design, Dr. Scholl’s Shoes is using shoe boxes made of recyclable materials and soy-based inks, reducing packaging inside the box, and changing shoe sticks from plastic to bamboo.
To date, the brand has used more than 100,000 yards of sustainable materials, and saved more than 1 million square feet of plastic and 650,000 square feet of paper.
Dr. Scholl’s has pledged to plant trees throughout communities in order to offset carbon emissions created in the production, distribution, and sale of footwear. In 2019, Dr. Scholl’s will plant more than 6,000 trees.
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