No looking back
Local nonprofit hits the ground running for area kids
By Kris Leonhardt/Peggy Sue Meyer
MARSHFIELD – A local nonprofit has gone from concept to action, after learning about a program to help local youth.
“Sleep in Heavenly Peace is a nationwide nonprofit that started in 2012 in Twin Falls, Idaho,” explained Joleen Schade. “It started in a family’s garage, where they wanted to do a project at Christmastime and help a family. So, they built a bed and found someone on Facebook that needed a bed, and while they were looking for that person that would need that bed – that child – they had a huge response of people also wanting to help them by donating bedding or helping build more beds. So, it kind of started that way – it started as a Christmas project for a family in Idaho.”
In 2018, the group was featured on a national TV program.
“That just caused Sleep in Heavenly Peace to explode,” Schade added.
After that, Sleep in Heavenly Peace saw huge growth, with chapters popping up around the country.
“I learned about Sleep in Heavenly Peace from a chapter in Trempealeau County that was looking for quilts. I thought that I could make some quilts and send to them, and then as I thought about making those quilts, it just hit me…if there were kids in Trempealeau County that didn’t have beds, there were kids right here that didn’t have beds. We needed to do something about this to help kids in our area too,” Schade recalled.
Jolene and her daughter went to training in July of 2019.
“We came home from the training just full of energy and excitement to get this off the ground. Our church had helped us raise money for tools and lumber,” she said.
“We built our first bed in Spencer, in August of 2019. It was August 11. Two days later, someone called the church, had heard that we had built these beds, and knew a family that needed beds in Marshfield.
“So, we weren’t even really an official, official chapter, but we quick ordered mattresses; and, we delivered our first beds Aug. 24, 2019, to a young family in Marshfield who had just moved here; they literally had nothing.
“From that point there was just no looking back.
Sleep in Heavenly Peace is a nonprofit that builds beds for kids, ages 3-17, that do not have a bed to sleep in. The Spencer Area chapter serves an area 30 miles in every direction of Spencer.
The beds are constructed during special “build days.”
The Spencer chapter has coordinated six builds and built 180 beds. The group has delivered nearly 150 of those beds.
The group has a build coming up on June 12, 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., in the Spencer Village Park in Spencer, to continue to create needed inventory.
Through the organization, kids receive the bed, a new mattress, and bedding, which is delivered and set up in their home.
If you know a child in need of a bed, visit shpbeds.org/request-bed to place a request.
For more information on the chapter, or to volunteer, contact 715-613-3140 or [email protected]
To learn more, visit www.youtube.com/watch?v=A45zGpWTx08&t=352s.