I realized that not all choose to be homeless
Who says men can’t multitask? Sackcloth and Ashes, a brand from California has created a way to stay warm while helping our local shelter. Now, men and women all over the world can (finally) succeed at doing two things at once. The concept is simple and noble: buy one of the beautiful high quality blankets from Sackcloth and Ashes and a second blanket will be given local shelter to help the homeless stay warm as well. I could talk about how awesome they are all day but instead of my rambling, I have an interview with Sackcloth and Ashes’ founder.
Before we talk about Sackcloth and Ashes, tell me a little bit about yourself.
My name is Bob Dalton. I’m from a little Oregon Coast town called Coos Bay, where it rains 75% of the year. I now live in San Diego, CA where I am burnt 75% of the year. I’ve been married to my high school love for six years now and going strong.
I’m pretty sure being the founder of a new company is time-consuming. Do you have time for any hobbies after work?
Umm… I like to talk about starting other companies. I like reading and learning about spiritual things. I like BBQing with good friends. I like schooling people at hoops.
Awesome. Any book recommandations?
I always recommend “The Art of War” by Sun Tzu (Every person in leadership should read the purified version of this).
Why did you decide to start Sackcloth and Ashes?
In 2013 my mother had become homeless. This change my paradigm of the homeless community because my mother is the hardest working woman I know. She has two college degrees, managed restaurants, and raised my sister and I by herself. Because of my mother’s story, I realized that not all choose to become homeless – that some just need a second chance. I began to call homeless shelters in my area to ask what they needed. They all said blankets. That’s when I founded Sackcloth & Ashes.
Sackcloth and Ashes is a name filled with meaning. Would you like to elaborate on the significance as well as what it represents for your brand?
The name Sackcloth and Ashes is ancient Jewish symbolism meaning “mourning” & “repentance.” The idea is that for every person who wraps themselves in a S&A blanket, it symbolizes mourning over the homeless population and repentance by contributing to a homeless shelter in their area.
Describe your blankets in one sentence.
A universal product that comforts all people.
Your website states that if we buy a blanket, you will ship a blanket to our local shelter. How does that work?
In the states we donate based on zip code. Internationally we donated based on country. Our main partner is the AGRM – Association of Gospel Rescue Missions. They have been such a huge help of connecting us to that community.
You have an amazing mission that inspires people around the world. Can you name one person and one organization that inspire you?
I would say my buddy Jordan. He is S&A Operations Manager and one of my best friends. He has been by my side from the beginning and he believes things into existence.
As far as organizations… I would say my most recent one is the San Diego Rescue Mission. I serve there on Tuesday’s now and I’m floored by the work they are doing for the homeless in San Diego…
People say the first year in business is the hardest. You guys celebrated your one year anniversary this month. What was the hardest challenge you’ve had to overcome?
Customs… haha – If there is one thing that I learned, it’s to make and order my product long before I sell i They like to hold things as long as they can sometimes.
What was the most rewarding moment?
I wake up every day and feel like I’m living someone else’s life. I’m so thankful for everything and everybody in my life and don’t deserve any of it.
How many blankets have been donated since launch?
One of your pictures was featured on Instagram’s Instagram account. How did that happen and how did it impact your brand?
I met the Instagram Community Builder at a conference I spoke at. He was the first in line to buy a blanket. He contacted me three months later and shared how my story was going to be pitched to his team. Then, two days before Black Friday, we got featured. It was hands down the tipping point for the company. It blew us up. I will forever be in debt to him and the Instagram team.
What would you recommend to someone who would like to help out more in their community but don’t know where to start.
First, buy a blanket & serve in your local shelter. We will be launching some new ways for people to get involved within the next year.
Bob, thank you so much for your time. Where can people follow Sackcloth and Ashes?
Any last words?
Joy is always found in giving.
Thanks for the support of our brand!
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