Indy man gives back to homeless communities through business

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Wheeler Mission needs 44,000 socks, hats and scarves for a year's supply.

A local company started by a recent college graduate wants to take that burden off their plate. He’s doing it with socks.

Keaton Hendricks hatched a plan while he was a student at Taylor University. Hendricks came up with an idea to not only sell socks, but donate them to the homeless. At 25 years old, he’s already helped nearly 40 homeless shelter across the country.

“We put as many socks in our dorm room as we could fit and came up with tangible way to give back,” said Hendricks. “We would not be selling socks, just to sell socks or scarves or beanies. There’s got to be something more to it.”

His business is called Sky Outfitters. People can purchase socks, beanies or scarves and in return the same item is donated to a shelter for a person in need.

“It goes to one person, and that makes a huge impact. It’s not just a number, it’s a person that’s the recipient of that,” said Hendricks.

Each month, Sky Outfitters partners with a shelter and tries to supply that shelter with enough support to last 12 months. Wheeler Mission told him it needed 40,000 socks, 2,500 and 1,500 hundred scarves.

“The number they gave us was way beyond what we thought was even imaginable,” said Keaton.

But it’s what is needed. Steve Kerr is the Executive Vice President of Advancement for the Wheeler Mission. He says, a new pair of socks or a fresh hat is a first step to a life change.

“These will be shared with our ministries in Bloomington, because the need is great there as well and with Keaton’s permission if we have leftovers, we will share it will homeless on the streets,” said Kerr.

Sky Outfitters has collected 17,000 socks and hundreds of hats and scarves so far and Hendricks says he’s not stopping.

“We felt like we should go after it and if we fall short, that’s okay,” said Hendricks. “They gave us a number, and that’s our goal for each shelter, so why change it?”

A big act of kindness from a company that’s just getting started.

“There’s a lot of times where we hand a pair and people put them on right away,” said Hendricks.

Sky Outfitters has until Saturday at midnight to reach their goal of 44,000 items.

If you would like to help click here to visit their website.

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