Shopping locally this weekend will do more than help keep Doylestown's independent businesses alive.
Each purchase also will help a young Bucks County woman battling toxic mold exposure.
Jen Liese, 29, was "unknowingly exposed to and became infected with invasive levels of toxic mold" during the winter of 2010 and 2011. The daughter of Peter and Teresa Liese, Jen is a graduate of Council Rock and a native of Rushland, in Wrightstown.
Jeanell Morgan, who owns The Monkey's Uncle boutique on Doylestown's East State Street, said several business owners learned of Liese's plight from employees at the Bucks County Courthouse, where Liese's father works in emergency services.
"Our hearts really went out to her, and we wanted to do something to help," said Morgan.
This weekend, many downtown businesses will hold "Doylestown Days." People who shop on June 8 and 9 can mention Jen Liese's name when they check out, and the business will donate 10 percent of the sale to a fund to help cover Liese's medical treatments.
Liese had moved to New York state to teach and coach soccer in August 2010. But by September 2011, she had moved back home to Bucks County to focus on recovering from the infection, she wrote on her blog, A New Liese on Life.
Her condition has deteriorated, and she battles daily with symptoms including full body tremors and blackouts, as the mold attacks her nervous system and brain.
"It was my goal to be healthy enough to return to teaching and coaching and once again positively contribute to the community by this fall," Liese wrote. "Now, my goal is survival."
Participating Doylestown Days businesses include:
- Mercury Tattoo Studio
- Olive Oil Etcetera
A beef and beer fundraiser also will be held June 15 at the Hilltop Athletic Association in Feasterville/Trevose.
For more information and to see how you can help, visit Liese's website.