Volunteers from Massachusetts Credit Unions Build Beds for Children in Need of Sweet Dreams

  • September 10 2019

A Bed for Every Child, an initiative of the Massachusetts Coalition for the Homeless works with public schools, as well as other community organizations, to provide access to free new twin beds for children in need throughout Massachusetts.

It is not hard to understand why teachers are key identifiers of these children, as studies reveal that sleep plays a significant role in a child’s ability to learn. The American Sleep Association, who endorses the work of A Bed for Every Child, has done research in this area which shows that lack of sleep has a negative impact on a student’s concentration, memory, and ability to learn. Studies have shown that for children, the amount of sleep they are able to get directly impacts their academic potential and children who have more sleep achieve higher in math, science, and reading. In contrast, children who get little sleep are more likely to have behavioral problems, be prone to general moodiness, and have difficulty living up to their potential.                                                         

Although a bed alone is not going to solve poverty, giving a child tools they need to receive an education, for example a bed, can help them break the cycle and lift them out of poverty as an adult.

Through the Massachusetts Social Responsibility Committee, the Massachusetts Credit Unions have been a major supporter of “A Bed for Every Child.” Last year 2,229 children in the state received beds, which is a positive step in the right direction for them.

Last Friday 35 volunteers from six credit unions, the CCUA, and two vendor partners joined CCUA President/CEO Ronald McLean to build and stain 20 beds for children in need. For more than half of the group, including McLean, it was their first-time building beds.

Each team was shown their bed to build and the materials in place to do so, but prior to starting they leaned the name and story of each child who would receive the bed once completed. Several of the stories were read aloud. The volunteers from Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union were making beds for children from one family who lost everything in a recent fire. The room was soon abuzz with carpentry sounds - hammering, sinking screws with a screw gun, sanding, etc. as the teams got down to business building beds.

All the volunteers were honoured for the opportunity to build a bed and went home that day knowing they made a difference for the child who would soon receive a new bed. McLean addressed the group and expressed his thanks by saying, “Thank you to all the credit unions from across the state and our business partners that participated. Building a bed for a child living in poverty means they know someone cares about them, gives them a greater sense of self-worth, and will put a smile on their face. I hope they dream big while sleeping in the beds we built.”

Group Clapping

Success!  Beds built and stained for 20 children!  Thank you credit unions! Dream Big!

Click the image to watch a video of the group

Linda Robichaud from Tewksbury Federal Credit Union was among many of the volunteers who came for a second time because she enjoyed the experience so much the first time and stayed true to her words of “can’t wait to do it again.”

Massachusetts Social Responsibility Committee Chair Paul Marotta thanked everyone for their participation in the day’s event and is very proud of the efforts made by the credit unions and the awareness that is being made across the state for this great cause, A Bed for Every Child.

The Massachusetts Social Responsibility Committee and the Massachusetts Coalition for the Homeless extend a big “Thank You” to the volunteers who came out from Align Credit Union, Lowell; First Priority Credit Union, East Boston; Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union, Lowell; MassMutual Federal Credit Union, Springfield; Tewksbury Federal Credit Union, Tewksbury; CCUA, Marlborough; Business Service Provider Octant Business Services, LLC, Littleton; and Strategic Business Partner Wipfli, Portland, ME.