Genesco’s community relations program supports volunteer-led community outreach and non-profit initiatives that align with the Company’s philanthropy goals, with an aim to improve the overall quality of life in the communities where our employees work and live, and beyond.
COVID-19 Community Outreach
During the unprecedented period of the COVID-19 pandemic, Genesco and its operating divisions stepped up to support communities where our employees work and live both in Middle Tennessee and the U.K.
Genesco was proud to partner with the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency’s (TEMA) and its COVID-19 response effort. The Company donated 25,000 square feet at the Journeys Distribution Center in Lebanon to help TEMA with the area’s COVID-19 pandemic emergency response. The space was used to store TEMA’s medical supplies for the region.
In addition, Johnston & Murphy donated more than 25,000 masks to the Community Resource Center in Middle Tennessee to help the non-profit agency’s endless support of COVID-19-related community initiatives. Recipients included every Metropolitan Nashville public school teacher as they headed back to the classroom.
Journeys and Genesco Licensed Brands collaborated on footwear donations to the Middle Tennessee community, including Metropolitan Nashville and Wilson County public schools, frontline healthcare workers and Soles4Souls. Also, the Schuh Trust donated £3million to the U.K.’s National Emergencies Trust and the NHS Charities Together COVID-19 Appeal to help U.K. charities combat the effects of COVID-19, including providing vital support of food donations and mental wellbeing counseling, assisting those struggling with debt, and more.
30th Anniversary of Genesco’s Annual Community Outreach Cold Feet, Warm Shoes
For more than 30 years, Genesco’s signature community outreach program, Cold Feet, Warm Shoes, has provided more than 100,000 pairs of shoes to communities in need. The annual event brings together employees cross-divisionally for a day of community service.
As part of the program, Genesco volunteers individually measure and fit each child with a pair of new shoes in a mock shoe store, usually set up in a gym. Students will also receive warm socks. Cold Feet, Warm Shoes provides children with the power of choice; the same respect and service they would receive at any of Genesco’s 1,460 retail stores; and the practical solution of properly fitting, warm footwear.
In December 2019, more than 250 Genesco employee volunteers took part in the Company’s 30th annual Cold Feet, Warm Shoes event at Park Avenue Elementary School in Nashville. Together, Genesco volunteers fit approximately 400 students with a new pair of shoes, warm socks and a new sweatshirt for holidays and pending winter weather. Students were empowered with a choice and provided the same respect and service that they would receive in any of Genesco’s 1,400-plus retail stores.
In the News:
- “Businesses make a difference — big and small — for Nashville’s students. Here’s how“
“Make a Difference” Charity Golf Tournament Benefitting United Way
Since 2003, Genesco’s United Way “Make a Difference Charity Golf Tournament” has raised more than $5 million for the United Way of Greater Nashville. Underwritten 100% by Genesco, the event is run solely by Genesco volunteers, with more than 75 employees involved in areas ranging from its steering group to course volunteers. All proceeds benefit the United Way of Greater Nashville and the middle Tennessee community.
United Way of Greater Nashville
Shortly after the Company’s founding in 1924, Genesco collaborated with other Middle Tennessee community leaders and established the United Giving Fund, predecessor of today’s United Way of Greater Nashville. For more than 90 years, Genesco’s employees and the Company have been making a difference in the lives of thousands of Middle Tennesseans, by community engagement events ranging from the “Make a Difference” Charity Golf Tournament, bake sales and chili cook-offs to the annual United Way Corn Hole tournament and one-on-one community outreach.
Beyond its volunteer efforts and giving back to the community, Genesco believes it is important to give back to its greatest assets, its own employees. The Company maintains two legacy programs to make a difference in its own employees’ lives.
Genesco’s Employee Scholarship Fund
The Genesco’s Employee Scholarship Fund was established as part of the Company’s 75th anniversary and in celebration of its employees. The fund was established to assist Genesco employees, both full-time and part-time, and their children, in attending four-year colleges and universities. Since 2003, approximately 250 scholarships have been awarded both domestically and internationally. The scholarship committee of The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee serves as a third party entity that oversees the application and selection process. In 2020, the Company’s Journeys division launched its own scholarship program, adding even more employees with scholarship opportunities.
Genesco Employee Emergency Fund
The Genesco Employee Emergency Fund was established in 2010 following the devastating 1,000-year flood in Nashville, Tennessee. The benevolent fund helps Genesco employees or eligible dependents who are experiencing economic hardship as a result of certain unforeseen and unpreventable circumstances. This includes employees who are unable to afford housing, utilities, and other basic living expenses. Since its inception, hundreds of employees have benefitted from the Employee Emergency Fund. at www.cfmt.org/give/corporate-funds/genesco-employee-emergency-fund/.
In addition, the Company empowers employees to volunteer and make an impact in their own communities through a variety of supportive initiatives, including:
- Genesco’s Community Service Policy provides full-time employees corporate wide, 10 hours per year of paid time to perform community service.
- Genesco Employee Matching Gifts Program will match up to four donations per employee or director for a combined total of $1,000 each fiscal year to accredited 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations.