The Umpqua Valley Chapter of Sleep in Heavenly Peace held its first bed-build on Saturday, June 9th at MANcrafts venue in Roseburg, Oregon. Volunteers and other chapter Presidents helped the Umpqua Valley chapter meet its goal of twenty bunk-beds to be donated to children in need.
Chapter President JP Wilson led 50 volunteers through Umpqua Valley’s inaugural bed-building event. The event was scheduled to begin at 10 AM and end at 2pm, but rainy weather hindered production. MANcrafts owner Justin Troxel let the build go on a little longer so the team could complete their work, and the last bed was finished around 3pm. In an interview with Sleepopolis, Wilson said that the turnout of volunteers was “what he was hoping for” and all 40 beds “will soon have homes.”
As is often the case at SHP events, many volunteers who were unable to participate in the manual labor of bunk-building contributed by donating new sheet sets, pillows and blankets. A non-profit organization called The Umpqua Valley Quilters Guild donated six handmade quilts to the cause, many of them inscribing their initials or encouraging messages into the fabric. According to Wilson, the bunk-beds are not delivered to families until they are dressed with bedding and “sleep ready”.
More: Did you know that India’s first bed-in-a-box brand SleepyCat donated 100 mattresses to charity this year?
NEW BEDS, NEW SLEEP
So what happens to these brand new bunk-beds after they’re dressed and ready to go? Well, it’s not a first-come-first-serve situation — families and charities secure the beds via the SHP website before they are even made. Once the structure of the bunk itself has been built, SHP must wait for mattress donations which can take some time. While the 20 bunk-beds were completed on Saturday the 9th, the first one was not delivered until Sunday the 10th.
Wilson told Sleepopolis that the 19 other bunk-beds will be delivered to families and charities over the next few weeks as more mattress donations roll in, but for now, two kids in Sutherlin, Oregon are the only recipients of a bunk-bed crafted by the Umpqua Valley volunteers. Wilson, his wife, and two other SHP chapter presidents delivered the bunk-bed to the Sutherlin family, and Wilson said the experience was “amazing”:
It was extremely rewarding. As soon as the kids saw us pull up, they came running. They were all over the new beds and they started telling all their neighbor friends about their new beds, showing them what they got… it was really awesome to see.
The Umpqua Valley chapter was not the only SHP team to host a bed-build on that Saturday — Wilson told Sleepopolis that he knew of four other builds that were going on at the same time. There were, in fact, nine other SHP chapters conducting bed-building events on the 9th; altogether, SHP volunteers across the U.S. made 120 beds that day. Wilson went on to say that the organization is only growing in popularity, and there are already 68 SHP chapters in 29 states.
With his chapter’s first bed-build under his belt, Wilson told me that he’s currently planning the next event. He said, “I’m sure we haven’t discovered all the kids in Douglas County who need beds… our plan is to do a build a month.” The chapter plans to hold the next build on July 14th.
Sleep In Heavenly Peace is one of many organizations working to provide those in need with better quality sleep. Sleep-Outs, mattress drives, and bedding donations are becoming increasingly popular and we at Sleepopolis are curious to see if more bedding brands will follow suit.