ELYRIA — The local chapter of Sleep in Heavenly Peace visited homes to deliver and assemble beds for families Labor Day.
Elyria resident Roger Dorsey, 48, met with volunteers at his home to bring beds to seven homes for children.
Sleep in Heavenly Peace is a nonprofit organization dedicated to building, assembling and delivering bunk beds to children and families in need, according to its website.
Lorain County chapter president Dorsey said it’s a pleasure to provide for families in need and help improve life for children without their own beds. As a person who grew up in a big family on the east side of Elyria, Dorsey said he knows exactly what those kids are going through.
Dorsey grew up in a small home with six brothers and sisters, where his eldest siblings got their own beds, the boys fought over one bed and the youngest ones slept with his parents. He would often find himself sleeping in the closet.
“I tell folks, ‘You really don’t know a good night’s sleep until you don’t have one,’ and a lot of it is being able to have a bed for a good night’s sleep so they can go to school and be able to sleep and function when they’re at school,” he said.
Dorsey founded the chapter in July after he got the idea in April while watching web television series “Returning the Favor” starring “Dirty Jobs” host Mike Rowe, which had an episode about SHP. When he saw that, he decided to be a part of the organization and went to training in Idaho, the organization’s headquarters.
Since starting about a month ago, Dorsey said he’s received requests for more than 120 beds in Elyria, Lorain, North Ridgeville and Oberlin.
The organization provided beds for children often with single parents or grandparents ranging from ages 3 to 15. Beds also come with sheets, pillows, and other bedding to complete the bed so it costs nothing for the family. The cost to build, deliver and assemble the bed is $300.
“It’s giving them ownership of something that’s there’s something they can come home to that they have and know that no one’s going to take it from them as long as we’re around,” he said.
Though the chapter has had many donations from local businesses, including Lowe’s in Elyria and Lorain, as well as School Employees Lorain County Credit Union, it’s yet to find a sponsor to help with the production, all done by hand.