Humanitarian Social Innovations is proud to have Downtown Wellness Berks as part of our network of social entrepreneurs.
In the spring of 2017, a small group of entrepreneurs and business owners passionate about wellness gathered to discuss healthy living practices and ways to make those practices more accessible to the community. Based out of the organic cafe/juice bar The Farmhouse Kitchen in West Reading, PA, the initial group consisted of Martie Samuel, owner of The Farmhouse Kitchen; Courtney Shober, The Farmhouse Kitchen Education Coordinator; and a variety of enthusiastic speakers and panelists that came to share their knowledge at the cafe’s evening events. Through these discussions, the group realized that there was something missing from their community.
“We found there was a gap between the people looking for resources and support in their own personal ambition to achieve a healthier life, and the people and businesses that were available to support them,” Courtney Shober said. “Speakers and panelists would mention resources that they used in their own lives, and attendees of the events — even those that had been trying to live a healthy lifestyle — had never heard of these places or people that were available so close by.”
The founders decided to take their passion for wellness to the next level and bridge the gap themselves by creating a community resource: Downtown Wellness Berks. The group joined Humanitarian Social Innovations’ network in November 2018.
“We started Downtown Wellness Berks to form a collective of passionate professionals to support each other, raise awareness about all the diverse and integrative pathways to health available locally, and provide high-quality services and goods to individuals looking to improve their health and well-being through natural and holistic methods,” Shober said.
Downtown Wellness Berks Today
Since its early days in The Farmhouse Kitchen, Downtown Wellness Berks has grown into an organization of more than 21 affiliates and is continuing to expand its network.
The group provides information about how to achieve health and wellness, facilitates access to products and services that support a healthy lifestyle, acts as a resource for health and wellness information and helps people in the community create healthy lifestyles for themselves.
“We’ve spent the last year and a half building a strong foundation of passionate wellness professionals and forming a coalition of sorts to create meaningful relationships with each other, share ideas and resources, and learn from each other in ways that will help us show up even better for our clients and customers,” Shober said.
She added that looking forward, Downtown Wellness Berks hopes to collaborate with small local business owners and become a resource for their employees, as well as acquire grants that will help make the goods and services of its affiliates more accessible to underserved and vulnerable populations. The group also plans to host engaging events that will inspire and inform members of its community and beyond.
Humanitarian Social Innovations is pleased to sponsor and serve Downtown Wellness Berks in order to maximize its impact on the local community. You can support the organization below.