Everyone deserves a good night’s rest and there is an organization in Flushing whose mission is to make sure that children who’ve been sleeping on the floor have a bed of their own in which to sleep.
Sleep in Heavenly Peace (SHP), a nonprofit organization, provides beds for children going through difficult times for a variety of reasons. Flushing resident Karen Gasperosky co-founded the local chapter of the organization in 2020. Her living room is stacked high with bedding to be delivered along with the beds.
Gasperosky became interested in the organization after watching a podcast titled “Returning the Favor: Sleep in Heavenly Peace” hosted by Mike Rowe, an Emmy award-winning TV host, producer, narrator, podcaster, spokesman, bestselling author and recording artist. The heartwarming podcast episode highlighted the work of the organization.
Originally founded by Luke and Heidi Michelson in Idaho, SHP has chapters throughout
the United States, Bermuda, the Bahamas and Canada.
Their mission: NO KID SLEEPS ON THE FLOOR IN OUR TOWN!®. “For just $250, we can provide a fully-furnished bed with a new mattress, pillows and bedding,” Gasperosky reports. “The beds are given to those in need at no cost to them.” Beds are available for kids ages three to 17.
How to Apply for a Bed
To qualify as a bed recipient, you must be the legal guardian of the child or children ages 3-17 years old receiving the bed. Please submit the online SHP Application Form.
Referring a family for a bed is a big responsibility; generally, it is through referrals that SHP finds the families most in need of the beds. If you have a referral, please submit the online SHP Application Form.
Selecting a Recipient
Once SHP receives an application, the selection committee will review it. Selecting recipients is not done on a first-come, first-served basis – it is based on which children are most in need of beds.
SHP builds and delivers twin-size beds as supplies and donations allow. When they’re out of beds or bedding, they file unselected applications away until they can build more beds. Unfortunately, they can’t guarantee that every applicant will get a bed.
There are other criteria; for more information or to apply, visit shpbeds.org/apply/
With the help of many dedicated volunteers, SHP builds and delivers comfortable beds with the goal of improving the sleep quality and dignity of the recipients. According to Gasperosky, a bed-building event was held in September of last year in the parking lot at the Millington Church of God. “It was our biggest Build Day ever!” she exclaims.
On December 9, SHP Flushing participated in Delivery Across America Day when 25 beds were delivered. “To date, we have delivered 259 wooden bunk and twin-size beds!” Gasperosky proudly shares.
SHP is funded by sponsors and donations from private individuals and businesses. Signs by Crannie and the Flushing Rotary Club are co-sponsoring the next Build Day, scheduled for February 3 2024. It will take place at the Signs by Crannie facility located at 4145 Marketplace Dr., just off Bristol Road east of Linden Road.
A lifelong Flushing resident, Gasperosky finds her work with SHP to be very rewarding. Research shows that 2-3% of children in the U.S. don’t have a bed to sleep in, she informs. SHP Flushing, which serves ten area zip codes, currently has 300 requests for beds. Gasperosky is also very grateful for the many volunteers who build and deliver the beds. “Without them, I would have nothing.”
SHP is always looking for volunteers. According to Gasperosky, there are approximately 20 volunteers of which 12 are consistently active. Service organizations and church groups also volunteer. “I would like to see the number of our volunteers double,” says the Flushing Chapter founder. For information on how to volunteer, visit shpbeds.org/chapter/mi-flushing/