Friendly's Story

Friendly at a Glance

Friendly is a functional solutions company. Our technology product is a stylish, supportive shoe that goes on easy with one hand.

Friendly Shoes restore independence for anyone experiencing difficulty putting on real footwear. They are high-quality, durable, and look amazing. Be Friendly on your feet, and don't let difficulty putting on useful, attractive footwear hold you back anymore. 

Being Friendly means building community value. Our cause is funding cancer immunotherapy research trials at UCSD Health's Moore's Cancer Center. Our mission is standing for Clinicians, the backbone of medicine, and celebrating their contribution to society. We devote $5 from every pair of Friendly Shoes and 5% of Friendly Force Apparel sales to our cause and mission.

Be Friendly with us! Thank You, Very Much!!

Friendly’s Founder

Joseph DiFrancisco is an occupational therapist with blue collar roots. He’s helped thousands of people regain independence and a thriving, active lifestyle. He’s also a shoe enthusiast who demands stylish, functional, and comfortable footwear.

Problem Solved: difficulty putting on shoes

Joseph knows that difficulty putting on proper shoes is a major problem affecting even otherwise strong people. He’s had many patients who could run for miles, if only they could put on their shoes. With almost no attractive options available in medically accommodating active footwear, many people suffer a reduced lifestyle, decreased mobility, and lower self-concept simply because they can’t put on the shoes they want.

The Challenge: reinventing shoes

Being neighborly, Joseph decided to do something about it and help everyone experiencing difficulty putting on proper footwear. His goal was a technology solution in a supportive active shoe that looks and feels amazing. The bottom line was it had to be a shoe that Joseph’s peers -- licensed Clinicians -- could confidently recommend as a bona fide solution to anyone having difficulty putting on their shoes.

That means it has to actually be easy to put on, even by people with mobility issues and low grip strength. It has to provide the fixation, cushion, somatosensory perception, and traction we all need for stability against slips and trips. It has to accommodate a variety of feet widths and provide multiple insole options so every customer can get just the right fit. It has to be comfortable and durable enough that Clinicians working on their feet would enjoy wearing it every day, including on 12 hour shifts (the real litmus test!). And it has to look amazing! (Did we mention Joseph is a shoe enthusiast?)

The Solution: Friendly Shoes

The process took over four years of research and development with input from patients, PhD scientists, and craft shoemakers. Joseph studied medical literature learning everything he could, built a top-notch team across two continents, tested a score of prototypes, and poured everything he had into achieving his vision of reinventing how to put on shoes.

The result? A first rate, highly supportive, and full function leather active shoe with patent pending Easy Shoe Access technology (ESA) allowing anyone to easily put it on and take it off. That’s Friendly! So long, shoehorns. Goodbye, velcro. Hello Friendly!

Friendly’s DNA

Being Friendly means more than a first of its kind shoe. Friendly is Clinician founded and grounded in clinician values. We aim to increase quality of life. Our cause is funding cancer immunotherapy research. Our mission is standing for Clinicians, the backbone of medicine. But talk is cheap so Friendly devotes $5 from every pair of shoes sold to our cause and mission. That’s the Friendly Five. 

Cancer took Joseph’s mother, Rose, at far too young an age. Her passing inspired Joseph to follow his heart and build Friendly Inc. And right now cancer is affecting Friendly’s master craftsman, Selmar, whose ingenuity, expertise, and dedication was essential to producing a stylish, first-rate, and durable Friendly shoe.

In order to honor Rose and Selmar Friendly produces a special edition women’s and men’s MEDIMOTO subtly accentuated with pink, and named for Rose and Selmar. Wear it to show support for those affected by cancer. To directly support the fight against cancer Friendly Five funds research to Moore's Cancer Center at UC San Diego Health because its groundbreaking immunotherapy trials are WORKING! 

Friendly’s Mission: standing for Clinicians of all types

Most of all, Friendly proudly stands for Clinicians, the hands-on care and compassion assisting people of all ages to achieve the highest possible level of independence and dignity. Everyone knows the importance of ensuring high-level healthcare for older adults, but who is looking out for their Clinicians? Patients suffer when Clinicians get short shrift.

Friendly only being as Friendly does, the Friendly Five also empowers groups fighting for Clinician and Patient rights on critical issues affecting the quality of healthcare and Clinician’s livelihood. What do we want? Higher pay for Clinicians. Lower patient-Clinician ratios to ensure high-level healthcare, especially for the elderly.

Friendly wants to support groups that advocate for all types Clinicians, but will also consider supporting profession-specific advocacy groups if they are making real progress on an important issue. Friendly welcomes suggestions and input from practicing or retired Clinicians about what groups or people are making a real difference in Clinician/patient rights, and why Friendly should contribute Friendly Five funds to them. Contact us here. 

Going forward Friendly will be aggregating important news about Clinician rights and is using its corporate platform to help ensure Clinician viewpoints are represented. Follow Friendly on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter, and sign up for the Friendly Word email list below to stay current with Friendly's product, cause, and mission updates. Thank You. 

The Friendly Force: because Clinicians are great role models

Clinicians are unsung heroes. Their superpowers are compassion, work ethic, professionalism, knowledge, passion, and humility. They are strong, industrious, and unique individuals; the backbone of medicine, and rocks of their communities. Friendly celebrates Clinicians and honors their contribution to society. One way we do so is the Friendly Force.
The Friendly Force are colorful, fun characters presenting Clinicians as we see them: community superheroes and highly positive role models, especially for children. We hope the Friendly Force helps young people appreciate and aspire to Clinician values, work ethic, and respect.

Friendly is launching stylish, comfortable apparel and scrubs featuring the Friendly Force. Be Friendly with us and represent a company with a great product that increases quality of life for millions of Americans and creates real community value with every Friendly Five.
Thank You, and Stay Friendly!

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