…And they never looked back. Rob and Paul Forkan, the young creators of Gandys flip flops rose above personal loss to give back to those who are less fortunate than themselves.
Words Udeshi Amarasinghe
Flip flops had always been a product that the brothers had been very fond of, especially after travelling the world in these footwear with their parents. After a night of heavy indulgence, where Rob woke up with a mouth as dry as ‘Gandy’s flip flops’ (a popular English phrase) their dream was born, where Gandys was set up in the brothers one bedroom flat in London.
With the motto to ‘Explore and Inspire’, the brothers who had lost their parents to the devastating tsunami in 2004, while in Sri Lanka, realised that even though they had lost both their parents they had been lucky to have other family and friends to support and look after them—unlike some of the other people they had left behind. They wanted to give back to all those who were less fortunate than themselves. Furthermore, Rob and Paul were originally taken out of school by their parents to travel round South Asia, to not only explore but to fulfil a mission to help underprivileged people round the world. Gandys flip flops was a way for the brothers to carry on their parents dream and this is why the first children’s home built will be in memory of their parents—Kevin and Sandra Forkan.
Colourful, Yet Simple… Comfortable And Trendy Gandys Flip Flops Are Made Of 100 Percent Rubber Making Them High Quality, Durable And 100 Percent Recylable
Gandys flip flops funds Gandys Foundation, which works on the mission to open children’s homes all over the world. Rob and Paul’s goal has always been to give education, nutrition and shelter to underprivileged children around the world. Gandys first home will be opening in Goa, India to mark the tenth anniversary of the 2004 tsunami next year.
Colourful, yet simple… comfortable and trendy, Gandys flip flops are made of 100 percent rubber making them high quality, durable and 100 percent recyclable. Also the flipflops are FSC certified making them sustainably produced. All flip flops feature Gandys logo, representing the brothers time travelling and the woven rope strap, inspired by the original product (Gandhi’s Flip Flops) and traditional Indian flip flops.
“Though we have only been going for 18 months, the reception we have received has been overwhelming. The fact that such a young brand is going global in such little time is unheard of,” said the brothers. “This summer we had amazing support from Sir Richard Branson in which we worked on a campaign with him and the whole Virgin brand for International Flip Flop Day, which saw us renaming one of our flip flops ‘Necker red’ after his island and is now even stocked there for guests,” they elaborated.
The prime minister of UK, David Cameron has also given his support and the brothers walked around Downing Street in their Gandys. “Our fans include celebrities like Jessica Alba, One Direction, Jamie Oliver and Jessie J.”
Gandys are currently available in some of the UK’s biggest retailers, including Selfridges, House of Fraser, Schuh, Topshop and Topman Oxford Street and Asos.com and globally including in Sri Lanka through gandysflipflops.com. By Summer 2014, Gandys will be stocked internationally and will hopefully be sold in Sri Lanka as well.