WILLIAMSON COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) — “No kid sleeps on the floor in our town.” That is the motto of Sleep in Heavenly Peace (SHP), a nonprofit that builds, assembles, and delivers beds to children who need a bed to sleep in.
Clint Jones is the Nashville Chapter President of SHP. He said the lack of a bed impacts more than just a child’s sleeping patterns.
“It really does affect kid’s ability to socialize, to be productive in school,” said Jones.
For the past few years, this nonprofit through help from volunteers, take lumber and craft the parts needed to create a twin bed.
SHP has three storage units in Williamson County full of beds right now ready to be delivered and assembled for children ages three to 17 who are in desperate need of their own place to sleep.
“We’ve actually seen some statistics that say a kid that doesn’t have a bed to sleep in is not going to perform as well in school. That is something small, seemingly that can follow that child the rest of their life in terms of the way they develop, and the way they mature as an adult. Right now, we’ve got about two hundred beds that we need to get into homes and so we’re looking for monetary donations and warm bodies that can helped get these delivered,” he said.
It costs $250.00 to purchase lumber to make the different parts of the bed and secure the items like pillows needed to make the bed complete for a child.
“There’s a thing called a bed in a bag and it’s really popular. And that bed in a bag includes a fitted sheet, a flat sheet, pillow shams, pillowcases, and a comforter. We also have some people that will donate homemade type blankets and we’ll add that as an additional blanket. And so, when we put all of that together and put it on the bed it’s literally ready to sleep in and good to go,” he explained.
Beds are even given a stain that’s made in part from vinegar, so the stain is safe for children.
Once volunteers arrive to deliver and assemble the bed in a child’s home, it takes just 30 minutes for it to be ready to be slept in.
“What I love about deliveries is you get to see the final result, the smiles on the kids’ faces of getting their bed,” said Kevin Loveday, Build Leader of Sleep in Heavenly Peace Nashville.
His wife Buffy Loveday who volunteers with the nonprofit added, “It’s where they sleep, it’s where they’re safe, its where they can go, and it can be their own and nobody else’s.”
The couple has been volunteering with SHP in chapters from Chattanooga to Florida to Nashville.
“So, over the last five years we’ve delivered collectively over 500 beds together and with the assistance of a whole lot of other people,” explained Kevin. “The most impactful delivery I have involved was a 13-year-old young man who was living with his mom in a ten-by-ten storage unit and the joy to see on his face even despite the conditions of where they lived, was going to have a bed of his own.”
The couple has been grateful for the support from Lowe’s Home Improvement to help Sleep in Heavenly Peace’s mission in Nashville.
“Lowe’s has been a wonderful partner. They’ve donated lumber. We have bed builds in these very parking lots and they’re just a wonderful corporate partner to be able to allow us for the lumber and things to be more affordable,” said Buffy.
And the Lovedays look forward to sharing gratitude with anyone else who’d like to help Middle Tennessee children get a better night’s sleep.
“I challenge you, if you want to get involved, reach out, we’ll get you involved, but just take that one next step to do for somebody else,” added Buffy.
As for Jones, he has a simple challenge for people who are on the fence about donating or volunteering to build or deliver a bed: “Get out of your bed and go sleep on the floor and see what it feels like and see how you function the next day.”
News 2 honors Sleep in Heavenly Peace as our News 2 Gives Back Hometown Hero for the month of May, presented by Nashville Subaru for building, assembling, and delivering beds to children and families in need so children have a safe and comfortable place to sleep.
News 2 has also partnered with the nonprofit for Nexstar’s Founder’s Day of Caring Project happening later in June. Please, consider supporting us in our efforts to raise funds to get more beds into the homes of families in need.
Click on this link to donate.