BROOKINGS – During this recent Christmas holiday season, 20 children in the Brookings area began going to sleep and waking up in their own beds: thanks to the annual Home for the Holidays program participated in by Slumberland Furniture of Brookings, owned by Rob and Barb Jones.
Spearheading the work behind the program are assistant manager Shane Madsen and head salesman Mike Lau.
The donated 20 beds, either twin or full-size, (each including a frame, box spring and mattress) are Sealy or Tempurpedic, two of the product lines carried by Slumberland stores. The total value of the 20 complete sets is more than $10,000.
The program here in Brookings started as a result of the 40 Winks Foundation, that helps children by “getting them in their own beds,” Madsen said. “You’d be surprised at how many children out there either sleep on the floor, couches, or more than one kid to a small bed.”
He explained that the 40 Winks program, which began in 1991, is participated in by all of the 127 Slumberland stores in the 12 mid-western states in its sales area. Since the program started, a total of more than 30,000 beds have been donated.
“The 40 Winks Foundation is basically the big parent of this,” Madsen added of the Brookings’ effort. “It was to provide beds for children in need.”
“Homes for the Holidays is more or less a time that we chose to do it,” he explained. It’s usually over the holiday season. Starting around Christmas time through New Year’s, we try to get these beds out to the children.”
Without naming any local agencies, Lau noted that Slumberland works with “local charities” in Brookings to help them determine what families need beds. “They help us determine who needs a bed, get them where needed and set up.” And Madsen and Lau do some of the hands-on work of delivering and setting up the beds.
“Some of these beds, we certainly went out, delivered them and set them up right in their homes,” they explained. “Unbagged them, set them up on their frames and got them ready to go. We like to make it as easy as possible.”
Lau sees the donation of the beds as one piece of “promoting a healthy lifestyle through all kinds of things. Get them a healthy jumpstart.”
“At Slumberland we’re passionate about that and what we try to do,” Madsen said. “We’re willing to make sure that these children have a good night’s sleep in their own beds so they can wake up refreshed and ready to take on the day.
“Slumberland realizes that there’s an opportunity to help give back, in all the communities that Slumberland serves, not just Brookings.
“Our slogan is: ‘To give these kids a chance at a brighter future, a chance to dream.’
“Rob and Barb (Jones, the owners) have always felt very passionately about this program and they feel this is a great way to give back to the community that has served them so well for over 40 years in this business.”
Contact John Kubal at [email protected]