Clearwater, Florida – December 19, 2018 – Many of the homeless at the St. Vincent de Paul CARES CARE Center, located near downtown St. Petersburg, Florida, received an early Christmas gift this year. Their old, worn-out portable mattresses were replaced with 70 new, durable and much more comfortable mattresses. This generous gift came from several Tampa Bay area companies, Smartwerks®, a developer of point of sale solutions, their parent company Tyler Net®, a retail solutions company also located in Clearwater, Florida, and Evo Payments®, an industry leading credit card payments processor located in Tampa.
CARE Center Case Manager, Wes Bryan said, “These are awesome. They will be comfortable and warm for the people who are sleeping in the shelter.”
The idea for this generous gift came about when Patrick Kunish, Smartwerks’ Director of Sales, learned about the growing problems of homelessness in the Tampa Bay area. Kunish was attending the Las Vegas Market, one of the country’s largest trade shows, and met Scott Smalling, a sleep industry veteran and the founder of the non-profit Relief Bed®. Smalling explained how Relief Bed was trying to address the problem of a good night’s sleep for thousands of homeless people across the United States, because most spend the night sleeping on the ground or the floor of a shelter.
When Kunish returned home, he knew this was a cause his company could get behind. Over their 30 plus years of being in business, Smartwerks and parent company Tyler Net have quietly supported many local nonprofit organizations. For this year and into next year, they are directing their efforts on homeless shelters in the Tampa Bay area and helping these people try to get a good night’s rest.
Kunish contacted St. Vincent de Paul CARES to see if Relief Bed’s innovative shelter mattresses would help with their mission. After a tour of the CARE Center, Kunish saw firsthand how many people sleep on the concrete or floor every night. “The mats we were using,” said Marilynn Brownlee, Director of Communications and Outreach for St. Vincent de Paul CARES, “were aged and hard to store. Our supply of those mats were also dwindling because of age. These new mats will bring comfort to our clients, who sleep on the floor or concrete. The durable covering makes them easy to clean and much easier for our limited staff to care for.”
Kunish received substantial support from EVO Payments®, and with their commitment, Smartwerks and Tyler Net agreed to donate 70 Relief Bed mattresses to help the CARE Center better serve SVdP’s clients. Smartwerks has also pledged to replace mattresses as they get worn out in the future. The first step in their latest initiative has proven to be a successful one, and Brownlee added, “We look forward to a rich partnership with Smartwerks, Tyler Net and their network of conscientious businesses.”
Working together with EVO Payments and Tyler Net, Smartwerks is making this Christmas more comfortable for local homeless adults and children, so they can get a good night’s rest.
About St. Vincent de Paul CARES
Located at 384 15th St. N, St. Petersburg, FL, The CARE Center for homeless is open 365 nights a year and has a capacity for 75 mats, and provides men and women a safe place to sleep for the evening when they have nowhere else to go. The Shelter also opens its doors for a day center to their clients for respite from the environment and staff are available for assistance in applying for benefits and job opportunities. The mission of St. Vincent de Paul CARES is to alleviate pain and suffering, in a spirit of charity, justice, and mercy through person to person involvement. The CARE Center’s continued vision is rooted in the belief in the dignity of all people, they strive to harness the power of the human spirit to end homelessness, alleviate poverty, and improve the quality of life in the community.
Merrell T. Dickey, MA, MDiv, Chief Development Officer
St. Vincent de Paul CARES
384 15th Street N.
St. Petersburg, FL 33705
About Relief Bed International
Relief Bed International provides innovative, strategically built beds for impoverished people in emerging countries, disaster relief and humanitarian organizations in North America. RBI is 501©3 non-profit. For more information about Relief Bed International go to their website at
http://www.reliefbed.org or contact them at info(at)reliefbed(dot)com.
About EVO Payments
EVO Payments is one of the most innovative, customer-focused payment processors in the industry. Founded in 2001 and an 11-year integration partner with Datacap, the Company processes payment transactions for all major credit cards including Visa®, MasterCard®, Discover® and American Express®. Headquartered in Tampa, Florida, EVO is represented in communities across the country by point-of-sale equipment dealers and software developers, independent sales offices, banks, and an internal sales team.
About Smarwerks, Inc.
Smartwerks® is headquartered in Clearwater, Florida and provides small-to-midsized specialty retailers a cloud-based, point of sale solution. In the highly competitive point of sale market, Smartwerks sets itself apart through providing a cost-effective software for sales processing, inventory management and centralized accounting of financial data. The recent addition of a customer engagement marketing tool provides retailers with one of the best ways to engage with customers. For over seven years, Smartwerks has continuously improved their software to receive multiple recommendations from SoftwareAdvice.com and a near perfect rating from their customers.
Patrick Kunish, Director of Sales