ALL ABUZZ: SHP build day drew 60 vols to help make beds for needy kids

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About 60 volunteers showed up for a Sleep in Heavenly Peace build day where the makings of 35 beds were crafted in about two hours. (Rochester Voice photos)

ROCHESTER - On Sunday at Healey Auto Repair, it wasn't all about selling or fixing cars.
It was about sawing wood and making beds, as owner Brian Healey opened up his front parking lot along Milton Road to accommodate some 60 volunteers who showed up beginning at 6 a.m. primed to make the components for 35 beds in about two hours.
The sturdy pine beds are then built on site in the homes of deserving local families, said Jim Graves, who with his wife, Marlene, run the local nonprofit Sleep in Heavenly Peace.

Volunteers load headboards and footboards onto a rental truck during a Sleep in Heavenly Peace build day at Healey Auto Repair in Rochester.

"We make the final assembly at the homes of these kids, so they can watch and help," he said. "We even let them drill some of the screws."
During the two-hour building process it was all smiles as the Healey parking lot became a beehive of activity with everyone working in

Andrew Yates uses a specially made branding iron to scorch the Sleep in Heavenly Peace logo on a headboard built at Healey Auto Repair on Sunday.

lockstep in the charitable project.
Looking over the kinetic scene Graves smiled with satisfaction.
"In the past year we've delivered 158 beds, complete with comforters, sheets and mattresses," he beamed.
He said all of the beds go to needy kids who live within 15 miles of Rochester, including several towns in Maine.
There are 300 chapters of Sleep in Heavenly Peace nationwide, with three in New Hampshire, including Rochester and Sullivan and Hillsborough counties. Currently there are none in Maine.
In addition to volunteering his lot for Sunday's build day, Healey Auto Repair

Brian Healey works one of the saws during Sunday's Sleep in Heavenly Peace build day at Healey Auto Repair on Milton Road in Rochester. (Courtesy photo)

has also been the major driver of a recent fund-raising effort that has raised nearly $5,000 for the nonprofit.
On Sunday he was out on the assembly line, helping to make the beds.
Organizers say it takes several hours to ready and break down the assembly line, but only about two hours to make the bed components including headboard, footboard, side panels and slats.
Shari Gadwah, office manager at Healey's, was also on hand working on the assembly line.
The final touch is branding the "SHP" logo on the headboard, which on Sunday was being done by Andrew Yates and Amanda Hall, who is sales and marketing director at Healey Auto Repair.
Graves said he and his wife got the idea to start a Sleep in Heavenly Peace chapter after watching a show hosted by Mike Rowe, famous for his "Dirty Jobs" show on the Discovery channel, that highlighted the nonprofit, which delivers just-built sturdy pine beds to any child ages 3-17 that doesn't have one of his own.

Jim Graves looks on as volunteers load a truck with bed components

The motto of the nonprofit? "No kid sleeps on the floor in our town."
To request a bed go to:
Sleep in Heavenly Peace relies solely on donations. To donate go to

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