Partnering nonprofits building beds for BCS kids on Saturday seeking volunteers
The event will be held at the Habitat for Humanity warehouse at 509 South Bryan Avenue from 8:30 a.m. to noon
BRYAN, Texas (KBTX) - Two Bryan-College Station nonprofits are partnering to build beds for local kids on Saturday, and they’re looking for more volunteers to help them.
It’s a project that began locally back in March, and since then, the College Station chapter of Sleep in Heavenly Peace has built and delivered 27 beds for BCS children.
Joel Hammond is the chapter’s co-president.
“These are kids who don’t have any beds of their own. They’re sleeping on the floor, or on the couch, or with mom,” Hammond said. “That’s really the only eligibility requirement that we have. If you don’t have a bed of your own and you’re between the ages of 3 and 17, then you’re eligible.”
With their inventory now depleted, Sleep in Heavenly Peace is partnering with I Heart Bryan from 8:30 a.m. to noon on Saturday to build more. Their goal is to construct at least 16 beds.
Hammond says the beds will be single or bunk. An assembly line will be set up consisting of nine or ten different jobs, from drilling to sanding to staining. Multiple people will be performing each job, Hammond says. There will be training the day of the build and a waiver that needs to be signed.
“Our mission is to get kids into comfortable beds,” Hammond said. “It affects a child’s physical and emotional health, their self-esteem, and it improves their behavior if they get good sleep. They’ll also concentrate better when they’re in class.”
It’s the first partnership resulting from the I Heart Bryan’s new initiative called I Heart to Help that connects volunteers with good causes.
“The more people we have, the more beds we can build, right?” I Heart Bryan Founder and CEO Fabi Payton said. “We can have kids as young as 12 come build a bed, with their parents. They can have help. We can have a wonderful parent-child activity Saturday.”
Payton say any organization the focuses on BCS kids and their welfare is going to get their attention. It’s why she says she’s so excited to be involved with Sleep in Heavenly Peace for I Heart to Help’s first project.
“Our kids really deserve what they’re doing,” Payton said. “Our kids right here in Bryan-College Station deserve to have the best and deserve to have the greatest we can provide for them. They’re really working hard to do that. It’s just a blessing to have them here, and all they need is help.”
Voices for Children helps children in need across the Brazos Valley find stable homes. They say an event like this is as important to helping them as ever. The nonprofit served nearly 600 children in 2020, roughly 120 more than they helped in 2019.
“Being able to meet the needs of families in our community before their kids enter into the system is going to be a really huge impact, and can have a huge impact in preventing kids from coming into care,” Voices for Children Interim Executive Director Amy Faulkner said.
Faulkner says sometimes a lack of housing, negative living conditions, or the inability to meet the basic needs of children can lead to a child coming to the attention of the department and needing to be removed. She says a new warm bed can help improve those conditions in households where they may exist.
“Helping families who are struggling to meet those really basic needs of their children - food, clothing, shelter - and within shelter is having a place to sleep. That’s really important for kids,” Faulkner said. “I think it’s great that they’re building beds to help meet that need for some of our families in our community.”
Saturday’s building event is happening at the Habitat for Humanity warehouse at 509 South Bryan Avenue from 8:30 a.m. to noon. If you’d like to sign up to volunteer, click here. Volunteers can also sign up for delivery days, but Hammond says those will be announced at a later date.
If you have a child who is in need of a bed and would like to request one, click here.
“Our mission statement is ‘No kid sleeps on the floor in our town,’” Hammond said. “That’s our goal. It’s to get any kid who is on the floor or on the couch into a bed.”
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