HOWLAND – The youth of Howland United Methodist Church did their part this weekend to help area children have beds by participating in a partnership with Sleep in Heavenly Peace, which is building beds for needy families .
A working day took place this weekend in front of the church.
Kaila Mohney, director of youth ministry at the church, said 50 people attended, including members of youth groups and adult volunteers.
The constructed beds were delivered to the homes of families in Trumbull County.
The young people participated in a weekend of confinement Friday and Saturday and spent Saturday making beds. The goal was 80 beds in total, as each participant worked at a different station, such as a drill press, hand drill, cutting, sanding and cleaning.
A work team is installed behind the church and the other near the main entrance.
Event organizers said 70 families have signed up to receive a bed.
“We usually go on a mission trip, but this year we couldn’t do it, so we decided to participate in this project. Most of them are high school members. We have decided to make it an annual event and to partner with Sleep in Heavenly Peace ”, Mohney said.
The youth and the church have gathered various styles and colors of bedding.
A fundraising dinner earlier this year raised approximately $ 3,000, and a donation of $ 10,000 from the church was used for bedding, wood and materials.
“With the donation from the church, we actually doubled the amount of money we needed,” she said.
Elizabeth Darrin, 14, a ninth grader, said: “It’s really amazing to be able to help those who need help. We have been informed that many children do not have beds. There are things we take for granted that we assume everyone has. It’s humiliating to be able to help others.
Darrin said the young people watched a video on Sleep in Heavenly Peace on Friday.
Cami Thornhill, 14, president of a youth and junior group in Howland, said: “It’s amazing to be able to make beds for children who wouldn’t otherwise have them. We don’t know what their families are going through. I was shocked to learn how many children do not have a bed. It’s good to be able to help them.
She went with the delivery groups as they brought the beds to homes in the Warren area for installation.
Thornhill also helped build headboards for the beds.
“It’s fun. I work with electric drills,” she said.
“I think it’s important that by doing this we can have an impact and help people in the community”, Anna Rider, 17, from Cortland, co-chair of the youth group, said
Mohney said the organization is quizzing children about their interests so they can match bedding, sheets and pillow cases with items like butterflies, dinosaurs, animals or Star Wars.
Mohney said she has seen large families live in two-bedroom apartments and the children have to sleep where they can.
Other Build Across America events have taken place in recent weeks, including the weekend of June 12 when 10 beds were made by 40 volunteers in Cortland.