On a blustery Saturday morning, a group of volunteers in Cody are sawing, sanding, cutting and stacking boards that will soon become a needy child’s very own bunk bed.
The person in charge of organizing the day’s event is Dan Frederick, president of the Bighorn Basin chapter of Sleep in Heavenly Peace, a national organization dedicated to making sure every child has a safe place at night to lay their head.
“They estimate that about 3% of the kids in the nation don’t have beds,” Frederick said. “And we’ve found that to be at least 3% in the basin.”
For more than two years now, the Bighorn Basin Chapter of Sleep in Heavenly Peace has organized “build days” about once a month to construct beds that will be distributed throughout the region.
“We’ve got too many kids that are just sleeping, maybe on an air mattress, or on a pile of clothes on the floor, on the couch, something like that,” Frederick said.
Families who may qualify for a bed can apply for one at shpbeds.org, and many are referred to their local chapter by churches, schools, or other agencies.
The Bighorn Basin Chapter of Sleep in Heavenly Peace is one of three chapters in Wyoming – the other two are located in Cheyenne and in Rock Springs.
Frederick said there is a definite need for more volunteers in other parts of the state.
“In Fremont County, in Natrona County, there’s some real needs over there, and I’m constantly getting bed requests from those areas,” he said
Frederick encourages people who may be interested in helping the effort to log on to shpbeds.org and click on the box that says “get involved”.