Welcome to My Home
A Little Dough, A Lot of Fun!
The Fifth Annual Pretzel Fest, an event open to the public is a festival that celebrates the significance of pretzels in Berks County. This year, it was held on Saturday, September 23rd at the First Energy Stadium.

This year's pretzel vendors included Unique, Tom Sturgis Pretzels, Uncle Henry's Pretzles, Foltz and many others. Craft beer brewers include Stoudts Brewing and Black Angus Rest. The Adelphia booth handed out free crab cakes and the attendees enjoyed the puppy corner thanks to Cats Incorporated.

Close to 30 volunteers from Berks Catholic and Kutztown University participated at the event to ensure its success. Three locals bands were featured at the event and attendees were able to participate in kids and adult pretzel games and contests. 

A big thank you to all the sponsors, vendors and attendees of Pretzel Fest 2017!
Habitat for Humanity Chapter at Kutztown University
Kutztown University (KU) is a long standing pillar of higher education that draws students from near and far. Not only does the university stress the importance of student academics, but it encourages student development through hands-on experience through various clubs and organizations. Throughout the years, KU students have worked alongside Habitat for Humanity of Berks County, as event support, home project rehab volunteers, and ReStore volunteers. Now, students have taken on the H4H mission by establishing a chapter on KU’s campus!

The purpose of this organization is to provide volunteer opportunities to students with an interest in improving the community of Berks and surrounding counties. Students achieve this goal by working cooperatively with Habitat Berks.

The KU H4H chapter is headed by Morgan Rutkowski, who is the acting President. She is supported by Ashley L. Kolb, Vice President,  Brooke Gladfelter, Treasurer, and a host of student volunteers.This club meets monthly on Tuesday’s in the Old Main building, where students establish their chapter‘s volunteer opportunities and fundraising activities. 

We, the Berks County chapter, are delighted to work with KU students to increase home-ownership to families in need. Thank you! 
Building the Birdhouse Challenge
Habitat for Humanity of Berks County is excited to announce, we are expanding the scope of this year’s 2018 Birdhouse Challenge.  Our 3 rd annual fundraising event, in past years, showcased traditional birdhouses from local artists and craftsman. This year, the fundraiser is set to receive a restoration. We want to provide an event where businesses throughout Berks County, and various industries, can showcase their products and services using their interpretation of the “birdhouse”, as their guide.

The birdhouse theme will include and is not limited to the fashion, food, construction, computer, and entertainment industries. The possibilities are endless! We want our fundraising event to house the imagination and innovation of community.

Each birdhouse submission will be displayed at the Double Tree hotel one month prior to the fundraising event and auctioned at the event. We are excited and anticipating the artistry and innovation that’s within our great community. The countdown to Birdhouse Challenge has begun.
We welcome Patrice Bentz, a realtor of Re/Max Reading as the Chair of Birdhouse Challenge. With her guidance, we are planning to make Birdhouse Challenge bigger than it has ever been!

Interested in making a birdhouse? There is no fee!
Promote your business, organization or hobby by building your own birdhouse. Birdhouses must be available for display by the 20th of February.
Questions? Email Ashley Faulkner at afaulkner@habitatberks.org
Are you or your organization looking to plan an event or service project that benefits your local community? If so, Thrivent Financial can jump start your project. Thrivent Financial is a nonprofit organization that specializes in financial strategy services that help people make wise financial decisions and live generously. 
Thrivent promotes your organization’s cause by bringing together Thrivent Action Teams ( your organizations volunteers) with an event starter kit including:
  •  Promotional banner.
  • Invitations and thank-you cards.
  • Thrivent Action Team T-shirts.
  • A $250 Community Impact Card you can use as seed money to get your project off the ground and make a bigger impact.

To take advantage of this great offer, your organization must apply for your project at Thrivent Action Teams .  Once your project has been approved, Thrivent will send you your starter kit that will no-doubt promote your cause and event’s success.

For more information please visit their website at www.Thrivent.com 
Day of Caring
Would you like the opportunity to volunteer with a well-known organization for a great cause? Do you want the satisfaction of creating lasting change? Do you want a free t-shirt? United Way of Berks County can offer you that and much more. United Way, a nonprofit organization located Berks County, wants to promote positive change in people’s lives. Not just to the lives that their organization serves, but to the lives that partner alongside of their cause.

United Way annually hosts a “Day of Caring”. This preselected date hosts a day of volunteer projects throughout the Berks County area. These projects include gardening, painting, maintenance, and item organization. 

As a potential volunteer, you can volunteer with an established United Way community project or your group or organization can propose a community project to tackle. All projects must be submitted through the United Way project submission portal at www.uwberks.org .  Each project must be approved by United Way, in order to receive the “Day of Caring” affiliation.

This initiative brings together people from all walks of life to create lasting change and an overall enriched community. 

For more information, please visit www.uwberks.org
Berks Catholic Habitat Chapter
People of all ages are joining the Habitat for Humanity mission. Local high students along with staff at Berks Catholic High School, have renewed their commitment to community service by establishing their own H4H chapter within the high school. This chapter is the first recognized H4H high school chapter in the state of Pennsylvania. Go Saints!

Guided by staff advisor Kathy Molt, students organize their own Habitat events and fundraising initiatives.

Students actively participate as volunteers at the Restore in Temple, within our home rehabs throughout the city of Reading, and most recently at the 2017 Pretzel Fest held at First Energy Stadium. 

Berks Catholic’s mission to help student’s live productive lives of service is exhibited through the work these students perform throughout the community. Their excitement and enthusiasm to help others is inspiring. Great Job Berks Catholic students!
Tis' the Season of Giving
As we begin to enter into the holiday season, we all are reminded of the simple notion of giving. Whether it’s giving thanks for friends and loved ones, giving gifts to express our love and gratitude, or giving holiday cheer to those who are less fortunate. Whatever the reason you find yourself giving to or giving for, consider this. Give Tuesday, also known as #GIVETUESDAY, is a great opportunity to donate to your local Habitat for Humanity of Berks County.

What is #GIVETUESDAY, you may ask? #GIVETUESDAY is an annual donation campaign that provides you and your loved ones the opportunity to donate monetary gifts to nonprofit organizations. This initiative is annually marked for the Tuesday after the Thanksgiving holiday. This year, #GIVETUESDAY is November 28 th 2017.

In our mission to increase home ownership to qualified Berks County residents, we understand that we cannot embark upon this mission alone. We need you to join our cause through your funding and support. All proceeds help to benefit the completion of three home rehab projects located on Tulpehocken Street in the city of Reading as well as future endeavors. Gifts of any size is greatly appreciated.

To donate now, please click the button below
Shop at the Store that Builds Homes
 You Donate It. We pick it up. Others buy it.
When “its out with the old and in with the new” consider donating your gently used appliances, furniture, building supplies and other materials to the ReStore.

We accept all furniture, gently used appliances, lumbar, windows, doors, miscellaneous hardware, wall covering, electrical and plumbing fixtures, ceramic tiles and many other items.

In addition to diverting millions of pounds of material from landfills, we sell these donated items at 60%-80% off their initial price.

For donations and volunteer opportunities, Contact Joe Marmontello at
(610) 921-1315 or jmarmontello@habitatberks.org

Visit our ReStore Website at h ttp://habitatberks.org/restore/
Building Homes for Our Community and Future
Our three houses on Tulpehocken Street are set to be completed in the Spring of 2018.
Click on the images to take a look inside the houses!

Individual and group volunteer opportunities are available.
interested in volunteering or donating building material?

Contact Diane at deberhart@habitatberks.org
Newest member of our Habitat Family!
Penny Hummel, a native of Hamburg, Pennsylvania has joined Habitat for Humanity of Berks County as the Director of Family Services / Volunteer Coordinator. She has a Bachelor's degree from Cedarville University in Business, Marketing, and related Support Services.

In her professional career Penny, has held a plethora of positions all over Pennsylvania. She began her career as a Campaign Associate for United Way of Berks County, moved on to be a reporter at Berks-Mont newspapers. She then moved on to work for more prestigious organizations in Berks County such as Berks Career and Technology Center, Schuylkill Valley School District, Pipe Up! Media and AHEAD.
You can Help the Hurricane-Affected Habitat for Humanity Affiliates
When you make a purchase at Habitat for Humanity Berks County's ReStore between September 12 and November 31, 2017 ReStore will DONATE 20% of its net sales during this time period to Habitat for Humanity of Berks County's Hurricane-Affected affiliates.
5370 Allentown Pike, Temple, PA 19560
We Invite You to Make A Difference
We are looking for volunteers at our ReStore location. Our ReStore volunteer hours are Wednesdays through Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sundays from noon to 6 p.m.
We also have opportunities for bilingual volunteers and mentors.

Please contact Diane at deberhart@habitatberks.org for more information. 
From the Editor

Thanks for reading this newsletter and I hope we can count you as part of the Habitat family. As a recent graduate of Albright College, I am excited to continue my role in marketing this wonderful organization that is doing such incredible things. Getting the message out to this community is such an important responsibility because you make this all happen with your donations, volunteer hours and best wishes. My goal is to keep you informed and excited about the things Habitat will be doing so stay tuned for more great happenings and I hope you will share this with your family and friends.
We hope that our newsletter makes you proud to live in this community as you get to know more about Habitat for Humanity of Berks County with people working hard to make sure their neighbors have opportunities to better their futures and become more stable, stronger and self-reliant members of Berks County.

Please feel free to send any comments to pdangolla@habitatberks.org 
From All of Us...A Heartfelt Thank you!
Habitat for Humanity of Berks County would like to thank you for all of your hard work! Without our volunteers and donors, Habitat would not be able to build homes for families in our program. Without you, there would be no program! 
From our Habitat for Humanity family to yours...have a safe and happy Thanksgiving!