Marc Goldstein: Blankets of Hope Berks

Mark Goldstein, the founder of Blankets of Hope, is making a significant impact in the community through his inspirational work. Ten years ago, amidst negative news about Reading, Mark, a longtime resident of Berks County, felt compelled to make a difference. With his extensive knowledge of the promotional products industry, he had the idea to repurpose blankets purchased by a customer into donations for those in need. This sparked the beginning of Blankets of Hope.

Initially focusing on distributing blankets to organizations like the Salvation Army and homeless shelters, Blankets of Hope soon expanded its reach. Mark and his team realized that the need extended beyond just blankets, leading them to provide beds and even cribs to families in need. Through strategic partnerships with local businesses like Fecera’s Furniture, they were able to source quality mattresses and box springs at affordable prices.

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One of the key principles of Blankets of Hope is its minimal overhead costs. Mark’s background in business taught him the value of efficiency, and he applied this ethos to the nonprofit sector. By eliminating unnecessary expenses like office space and warehousing, Blankets of Hope ensures that nearly every dollar donated goes directly towards their mission of providing warmth and comfort to those in need.

The impact of Blankets of Hope goes beyond just providing physical warmth. Mark and his team understand the emotional significance of their donations, particularly for vulnerable populations like cancer patients, hospice patients, and children in foster care. By offering colorful blankets and beds, they aim to bring a sense of comfort and dignity to those facing difficult circumstances.

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In addition to their core mission, Blankets of Hope also hosts fundraising events like their annual chili cook-off and golf tournament. These events not only raise funds but also foster community engagement and support for their cause. With each successful event, Blankets of Hope is able to expand their reach and serve even more individuals and families in need.

Mark’s dedication to transparency and accountability is evident in Blankets of Hope’s financial practices. With a commitment to keeping administrative costs low and maintaining clear financial records, donors can trust that their contributions are making a direct and immediate impact in the community.

Over the past decade, Blankets of Hope has donated over 71,000 blankets and expanded their services to include beds and cribs. Through their innovative approach and unwavering commitment to serving others, Mark Goldstein and Blankets of Hope continue to inspire hope and make a difference in the lives of countless individuals and families in Reading and beyond.

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Jason Hugg
Jason Hugg
Editor and photographer of Reading Magazine.
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