Con­cert to ben­e­fit kids at Safe Berks

The Southern Berks News - - LOCAL NEWS - By Re­becca Blan­chard rblan­chard@21st-cen­tu­ry­media.com @boy­er­town­times on Twit­ter

Heaven’s Thun­der Band will be present the con­cert “In­spir­ing Hope” on Satur­day, Nov. 11, at the State Theatre of Boy­er­town.

All funds raised that night will go di­rectly to Safe Berks to ren­o­vate its chil­dren’s play­ground.

The goal is to raise $12,000 to re­pair and up­date the 30-by-37-foot play­ground area with a rub­ber mat base area. Mulch currently cov­ers the area.

“It is vi­tal for all chil­dren to have ac­cess to a clean and safe place to play,” said Mary Kay Ber­nosky, chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer of Safe Berks. “Chil­dren com­ing from fam­i­lies torn apart by do­mes­tic abuse have even a greater need for ac­cess to an en­vi­ron­ment where they can ex­pe­ri­ence in­di­vid­ual and group play in a safe space. We are thrilled to be se­lected as the ben­e­fi­ciary of the Thun­der Out­reach ben­e­fit con­cert Nov. 11, to help us pro­vide this for our chil­dren at the Safe House.”

The con­cert is be­ing pre­sented by Thun­der Out­reach Min­istries.

“The prob­lem is the play area is on re­ally, re­ally hard soil,” said Pres­i­dent of Thun­der Out­reach Min­istries.

He said right now Thun­der Out­reach is fo­cused on help­ing the Safe Berks pro­gram. They re­viewed the play­ground and de­cided they best way to up­grade the play area would be with the rub­ber mats, so if a child were to fall off the equip­ment they have a less likely chance of get­ting se­ri­ously hurt.

“This mat­ting is good for 10+ years,” said Mal­izzi, adding how lives will be af­fected in­stantly. “If we can pro­vide a bet­ter en­vi­ron­ment for ev­ery­body, it’s go­ing to help them get through what they’re deal­ing with in that mo­ment in time.”

Safe Berks, lo­cated in Reading, is a safe haven and support sys­tem for vic­tims of do­mes­tic vi­o­lence and sex­ual as­sault; it served more than 4,000 clients in the last fis­cal year.

“Ev­ery penny of that $20 is go­ing to be put to­wards build­ing this play area,” said Mal­izzi.” The State Theatre seats 225 peo­ple. If the con­cert sells out, ticket sales alone would bring $4,500 to the cause. “We want it sold out. We want it packed.”

For those who can­not at­tend that night, there is also an op­tion to buy a block (a rub­ber mat) for $15. Mal­izzi calls th­ese “build­ing blocks of hope.”

The group is look­ing to raise the re­main­ing $7,500 through lo­cal and cor­po­rate do­na­tions to reach the goal of $12,000.

“If we raise more than the $12,000 — then we’re ac­tu­ally go­ing to look to even buy and up­grade the play­ground equip­ment it­self.”

The Nov. 11 con­cert be­gins at 7 p.m. Doors open at 6:30 p.m.; The State Theatre is lo­cated at 61 North Reading Ave., Boy­er­town. Find tick­ets and ad­di­tional in­for­ma­tion on­line at thun­der­outreach.com/event.

“We’re about ask­ing to the com­mu­nity to help us make a dif­fer­ence in th­ese fam­i­lies’ lives.”

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