Ali Izzo and Holly Masters co-founded Purpose The Therapeutic Subscription Box, LLC as students at Penn State Shenango in June 2018, working out of VenturePointe at the eCenter @ LindenPointe innovation hub. At its roots, Purpose Therapy Box keeps families connected and reminds older loved ones they are not forgotten. Its gift boxes, which are curated with therapeutic themes, uplift the spirits of nursing home residents. Both Izzo and Masters graduated with associate degrees in occupational therapy in 2017. They both then earned their bachelor’s degrees in human development and family studies in 2018.
The company started as a subscription service for older adults, allowing family and friends to subscribe to send boxes to their loved ones. Boxes are curated with therapeutic themes, such as fine motor and cognition, have enlarged font, and respect dietary restrictions. Family and friends can add photos and messages into the package as well. The company also features its Sponsor a Senior Program, in which anyone can purchase or sponsor a box to be delivered to seniors in need at nursing homes who do not have family or regular visitors. Purpose Therapy Box partners with nursing homes to obtain a list of each resident’s needs, and boxes can be filled with items from clothing to blankets.
“At the beginning stages, it was critical that we used VenturePointe’s help,” Masters said. “Making sure we have a solid and structured business plan and solid structure legally. When we first moved in, we were able to share our office with another Penn State business. We liked that because we had constant interactions with other entrepreneurs, bouncing ideas off each other and hearing their process.”
Purpose Therapy Box has expanded and plans to ship gift boxes into eight different states, in addition to Pennsylvania, this holiday season and has 168 nursing homes on its waitlist for its Sponsor a Senior Program, which sends boxes to seniors in need. With the company’s recent growth, the co-CEOs now work from their own building in Hermitage, Pennsylvania, and are prepping to send subscription box orders to older loved ones across the country.