What is Knock Knock Give A Sock?
Knock Knock, Give a Sock is an organization that collects the most needed, but least donated article of clothing for those experiencing homelessness: socks. While many people donate clothing, 9 out of every 10 people have donated clothing have never donated a pair of socks. On top of that, most organizations do not accept gently used socks, but at KKGS – we do! Our partners and volunteers collect socks through drives and sometimes, by quite literally knocking on the doors of their colleagues, classmates, and neighbors. In addition to collecting socks for those in need, KKGS aims to reduce the stigma associated with homelessness. Through our Meet Your Neighbors Dinners and the Hakook Team, KKGS attempts to bring together those who are and are not experiencing homelessness in order to encourage discussions and ultimately dissipate the stigma.
HOW IT ALL BEGAN
“One cold night in November, I was handing out sandwiches to people experiencing homelessness in NYC when one man approached me. “It’s great that you’re giving out sandwiches,” he said, “but one thing we really need is socks, especially as winter approaches.” Here I was, sandwiches in hand, assuming I knew the best way to help people. In reality, helping is about listening, and hearing the needs of different communities. It was a powerful lesson, and I wanted to put it into action. I began that night, with a simple step: I went door-to-door on my NYU dorm floor and knocked on everyone’s door. I asked if they would donate just one pair of their own socks to someone experiencing homelessness. To my surprise I got over 40 pairs of socks in a single night, from a single floor. The next morning I walked out of my dorm room to find a huge pile of socks in front of my door from other people who had heard of what happened. It started small, but I knew it was such a simple concept that it could easily be grown. College students love to do good, but sometimes they need a literal knock on their door to do so. And most everyone has an extra pair of socks they can donate. That’s when the initiative Knock Knock, Give a Sock was created.”
– Adina Lichtman, KKGS Founder
OUR STREET TEAM - HAKOOK
Hakook is KKGS’s partner organization. In addition to handing out the socks KKGS provides, Hakook is a nonprofit that seeks to serve and understand New York’s street homeless population. Through delivering key resources like socks, Hakook’s team of volunteers have spoken to over 500 street homeless New Yorkers, providing the organization with a keen understanding of the barriers people face in living in shelters and accessing housing. Hakook plans to change the conversation around street homelessness through research, policy, and advocacy.