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Building Beds for Kids in Need

This charity helps give kids a good night sleep in their own bed

Article by Evelin De La Rosa

Photography by Contributed

Originally published in Cypress Lifestyle

On Christmas of 2014, Luke Mickelson came across a Facebook post from a family in need of a bed. Instead of giving his family gifts that year, he decided to build the family a wooden bunk bed. After he delivered his hand-made gift, Luke learned there were more local children living without beds. Some slept on couches, shared a bed or slept on the floor. Shortly after, Luke decided to start Sleep in Heavenly Peace, a national charity that builds and delivers beds to children in need.

The Service

Sleep in Heavenly Peace now has 250 chapters nationwide, including one here in Spring Cypress. The local chapter recruits volunteers and teaches them the skills needed to build and deliver wooden beds to children and families in need. Since the chapter began, volunteers have provided new beds for more than 150 kids. Their goal is simple: “No kid sleeps on the floor in our town.” 

 “Over the years, I’ve seen what a difference we make in a little kid’s life,” says Trey McWilliams, co-president of the Spring Cypress chapter. “Knowing that I am getting a child off the floor and into a bed at night keeps me motivated.” 

 Trey, who’s helped operate the local chapter since its start, was inspired to get involved after watching the show “Returning the Favor” starring Mike Rowe. The online show featured the founder of Sleep in Heavenly Peace and followed him in search of making a difference in many communities.

‘No kid sleeps on the floor in our town’

Sleep in Heavenly Peace’s mission is to make sure no child anywhere is left without a bed to sleep in. These high-quality beds are personally delivered and assembled at the child’s home, along with a few extras to make their bed cozy. Children also receive a comfy mattress, fluffy pillows, warm bed sheets and a comforter. The delivery is often met with much excitement. 

 “It brings me great joy seeing their faces light up once we deliver their bed,” says McWilliams. 

Children ages three to 17 years old are eligible to receive a Sleep in Heavenly Peace bed. Families must provide proof their child does not have a bed. This includes sleeping on a couch, sharing a bed with others, sleeping on an inflatable mattress, or on the floor.

 “It’s unbelievable seeing some of the conditions these children are sleeping in,” Trey says. “Most people do not understand that it’s important for children to have a good place to sleep for a variety of health reasons.”

Bunks Across America

This month, Sleep in Heavenly Peace will host Bunks Across America, an annual gathering where chapters around the country host a massive bed-building event. The goal is to build as many beds as possible in a single day. 

 “In the previous years, people from all walks of life became involved during this event,” says Alex Miller, another volunteer who helps the Spring Cypress chapter. “It’s grueling spending that whole day building bunk beds, but knowing that it’s to serve a good cause feels good.”  

Bunks Across America will be held on Saturday, June 12. In last year’s Bunks Across America, 6,200 volunteers from 118 different chapters nationwide built 4,637 beds. The goal this year is to gather 15,000 volunteers to build 7,500 beds. 

 “What I like about Sleep in Heavenly Peace is that we focus on one very big need,” says volunteer Courtney Knoff. “It’s like providing another Christmas for some of these kids who have been sharing beds with their parents or sleeping on the couch or even the floor.” or on Facebook @SHPSpringCypress. 


Bunks Across America, a nationwide building event, will be held on Saturday, June 12. Join the local Spring Cypress to construct beds during this mass construction event. The national goal is to gather 15,000 volunteers and build 7,500 beds. 

“It’s like providing another Christmas for some of these kids" - Courtney Knoff


Join the effort

A large amount of work goes into building and delivering beds. The demand for volunteers is urgent at the Spring Cypress Chapter. The group says there are more requests for beds than there are volunteers.


Learn construction skills

Sleep in Heavenly Peace volunteers have a chance to learn how to use woodworking tools such as saws, drills, sanders and hammers. They also learn how to measure, level and make true woodcuts.


Gift a bed

Anyone can make an online tax-deductible donation to help provide a bed for a child. Donations go towards bed materials, delivering and assembling the beds, and improving the organization.