Sarah Ford | September 5, 2014

2,000 Adults and Children in Need Will Receive New Beds

September 3, 2014 – More than 2,000 residents of the Washington area who have been sleeping in unfurnished apartments, in homeless shelters or in their cars will receive brand new beds thanks to a major donation from Washington philanthropists Ann and Donald Brown and a partnership with Paramount Sleep. The new initiative, called Browns’ Beds, is a project of A Wider Circle, which last year received 12,000 requests from low-income families in need of beds and other essential items. 

The Browns responded to the need with a $100,000 donation, which was matched by A Wider Circle board members and other donors before the Browns contributed another $100,000. The beds, which were purchased from Norfolk-based Paramount Sleep, will be delivered to A Wider Circle’s showroom beginning in mid-September. At that time, they will be available to the nearly 600 families on A Wider Circle’s bed waiting list. These include families transitioning out of homeless shelters, escaping domestic violence or simply living in poverty.

“We hear every day from families who are either sleeping on the floor or on mattresses you couldn’t imagine putting your head on, let alone your child’s head,” said Mark Bergel, founder and executive director of A Wider Circle. “Yet many in our region face that challenge, and so much more, every day – and night. Thanks to the $300,000 donated by the Browns and others which launched Browns’ Beds, and a partnership with Paramount Sleep, 2,000 residents of our region will – for the first time in a long time – get a good night of sleep.” 

“We are honored to have been selected by A Wider Circle as a bedding partner for this exciting new initiative,” said Richard Fleck, president of Paramount Sleep. “One of our company’s core principles is to be a good steward in our community and beyond. Supporting Browns’ Beds helps us achieve that objective as we take a small, but important, step toward ending poverty.”

Sleep expert Dr. James Maas, who has studied sleep for more than 40 years, pointed out that good sleep “has profound effects on your life in terms of good health, alertness, energy, mood, memory, thinking, productivity and performance.” 

About A Wider Circle

A Wider Circle’s mission is to end poverty. The organization’s holistic approach focuses on providing essential items such as beds, dressers, couches and dining room tables and chairs, and comprehensive job training. Last year, the organization served more than 25,000 children and adults in suburban Maryland, Washington, D.C. and Northern Virginia. For information, visit

About Paramount Sleep 

Paramount Sleep is an 80-year-old, third-generation, family-owned mattress manufacturer based in Norfolk, Virginia. Its handcrafted mattress brands are available at many of the top retailers in the country. For information, visit


For photographs, contact

Philanthropists Ann and Donald Brown, representatives of A Wider Circle and Paramount Sleep, families receiving beds, and a nationally known sleep expert will participate in a ribbon cutting on Wednesday, Sept. 17, at 10 a.m. at A Wider Circle’s furniture showroom, 9159 Brookville Road, Silver Spring. To RSVP, contact Janice Kaplan,


Janice L. Kaplan, A Wider Circle  |  202-277-5461,

Jennifer Butsch Petit, Paramount Sleep  |  757-656-9673,

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