Celebrating 25 Years Of Giving Back
Combining our passion for creativity with our culture of caring.
Like all great ideas, Kathy’s started with a challenge – trying to find unique products for her paint studio and retail store in Lancaster, Pennsylvania that she owned with her Mother for over 10 years.
Inspired by her desire for unique and creative items to fill her own shelves, Kathy took matters into her own hands, literally. She designed the first “primitive candle box” in 1997. Crafting the box by hand, taking care into each detail from the sanded edges to the type of ribbon tied on the wire handles, each was a work of passion.
Driven by her innate creativity and entrepreneurial spirit – the product that started it all was born.
Demand grew quickly for the growing line of handmade products, and Kathy enjoyed great success, it was then that she enlisted the help of the wonderful people at Goodwill Services to aid in fulfilling the increasing demand. It was at this moment that one of the most valuable philanthropic partnerships was formed and still exists to this day.
Currently a beloved member of Kathy’s Circle of Friends, Mike was also part of the original Goodwill Team who helped Kathy make her dreams come true in 1997!
Kathy’s Circle of Friends
Giving back has been in Kathy Phillips’ heart since the very beginning of Primitives by Kathy, her wholesale gift company. The partnership with Goodwill Industries more than 25 years ago is what made Primitives by Kathy possible and the desire to provide opportunity occupationally to adults with varied abilities has been a part of who we are ever since. Fueled by this innate passion, in 2017, Kathy’s Circle of Friends was formed.
Our events are staffed mostly by PBK employees who share Kathy’s passion of giving back to the community We are committed to engaging with each member individually, making a positive impact, all while growing our circle of friends. We are inspired by the impact of our events and find joy in giving.
Raising the Bar
With an ongoing goal of giving back to our community, we are proud to announce that 10% of our employees are team members with varied abilities! We are so fortunate to have them and celebrate their involvement in the company daily!
Our ongoing partnership with Goodwill services, and our commitment to hold exciting Kathy’s Circle of Friends events twice a month is not the only philanthropic opportunities that Kathy has adopted into her own life and the life of PBK.
UDS: United Disabilities Service supports people who are living with disabilities, who are aging, or who are recovering from an injury. Through funds raised by one of our benefit box signs, we have been able to support and sponsor 8 service dogs within the UDS program.
FHG: Friendship Heart Gallery & Studio is a creative arts studio for Artists with Developmental and Intellectual Disabilities and/or Autism. We are proud to have a growing line of products featuring artwork by a large group of spectacular artists at the Friendship Heart Gallery.
GMTRC: Greystone Manor Therapeutic Riding Center is a non-profit organization that has been providing quality equine assisted activities for children and adults with special needs since 1981. With Kathy’s commitment to serve on the board, and volunteer for 3 lessons weekly, her continued love for all things good shines.
Benefit Box Signs - Our most impactful line of products: 100% of proceeds from each benefit item are donated directly to each specified organization, allowing them to serve those in need and enhance the lives of others. Over $250,000 has been donated through these benefit products!
Kathy’s choices in philanthropic efforts go beyond people with varied abilities. Many of the organizations supported through our benefit box signs are organizations that are personally dear to Kathy’s heart. For example, we support two dog rescues that connected Kathy with two of her pups as well as the Center for Wildlife because of Kathy’s son’s career dedication to wildlife conservation. Suicide prevention for high school age children as well as adults is another mission close to Kathy’s heart.
We are always looking for ways to expand our philanthropic reach and are so eager to see what additional opportunities the coming years will bring.
While we always feel blessed to have a product line that resonates with so many beloved customers across the country, we are feeling even more blessed for the good that we have been able to do in our community because of PBK’s success over the years.
It took a lot to get us to where we are today - appropriately described in this best-selling box sign. Here are some additional thoughts from Kathy:
Think Deeply: I think deeply every day. I think about how grateful I am for the life experiences that keep my heart full.
Speak Gently: Speak gently and genuinely. I hope my encouraging words make a difference to someone every day.
Love Much: Show love and empathy in everyday interactions. Everyone is fighting their own battle of some kind.
Laugh A Lot: Close friends are life’s greatest treasures. Cherish your fun times together.
Work Hard: The harder you work for something, the greater you’ll feel when you achieve it.
Give Freely: Give all the time, you will grow richer in every way.
Be Kind: Random kindness is the best. Be the reason someone smiles everyday.
To our talented and passionate employees, for your tireless efforts and valuable contributions.
YOUR SUPPORT DOES GREAT THINGS!