Volunteers needed Saturday to build beds for children

Posted on January 13, 2021 by Staff reports

There are literally hundreds of children throughout Santa Rosa, Okaloosa and Walton counties who aren’t sleeping in peace, but only dreaming of having a comfortable bed… all while struggling to get a decent night’s rest on a couch, chair, blanket, or even a cold, hard floor.

To help provide them with a bed, Sleep in Heavenly Peace makes bunk beds for children who do not have a bed.

The initial concept for such a charitable organization to combat this sad situation started around the holdays about eight years ago miles away in a garage in Twin Falls, Idaho. It was a time of joy, giving and love, but also a time of bitter cold weather. Little did anyone know that one simple act of love and kindness would be the beginning of something huge.

Caring couple Luke and Heidi Mickelson had learned of a family’s need for a child’s bed so they launched a small project to build them one. A simple post on social media sparked an avalanche of response. Not requests from needy families, rather a host of people who wanted to help and volunteer.

When it came to their attention that the need for beds went far beyond their own neighborhoods, they took the initiative to answer the larger call to a national problem. It was no longer about just one family in need, but a question as to how many the group could provide. Sleep in Heavenly Peace was born and the organization has grown by leaps and bounds across the nation.

Since its inception, this all-volunteer organization has multiplied to 200 chapters with 35,000 much-needed and appreciated beds being built and delivered. A 20-bed project requires about 60 volunteers, which averages two to three volunteers for each bed built. The bed cost runs about $350 each.

SHP’s belief is that a bed is a basic need for the proper physical, emotional and mental support that a child needs. Their mission is: “No kid sleeps on the floor in our town!” Their goal – powerful but simple – to provide brand new, hand-made, ready to sleep in bunk beds to kids in need.

Plans and fundraising efforts are currently underway to build bunk bed from 8 a.m. until 12 p.m., Saturday, January 16 at DeFrance Antiques, located at 230 SE Eglin Parkway in Fort Walton Beach. Additionally, twin size “bed in a bag” or new standard pillow cases will also be accepted at the event.

Those in need of beds can complete a bed request via www.shpbeds.org.

Contributions are also available through the website or by mail or in person to:

     Mickey Hawkins, Chapter President

     Sleep in Heavenly Peace

     26 Yacht Club Dr., N.E.

     Fort Walton Beach, FL  32548

For more info contact Mickey at mickey.hawkins@shpbeds.org