Winnipeg Dufresne store builds beds for local kids in need
WINNIPEG – Team members from one of this city’s Dufresne Furniture & Appliance outlets gathered to build beds recently for some 140 local children on behalf of Sleep in Heavenly Peace (SHP) as part of the retailer’s Dream Big program.
This year, SHP Winnipeg’s bed installations and fundraising events were limited due to restrictions imposed to combat the COVID-19 pandemic and for the past several months the charity has had 140-child waiting list and almost as many bed frames in stock but no mattresses.
After hearing of the shortfall, Dufresne Furniture & Appliances stepped up to help with a donation of 140 mattresses through its Dream Big program.
“As an organization, we are committed to improving the quality of life for kids and families in our community,” Mark Dufresne, chief executive officer of The Dufresne Group, parent to the 11-store chain, said in a statement. “With this gift, and the hard work of SHP volunteers, 140 children will get the good sleep they deserve in a bed of their own. We look forward to continuing our partnership with SHP to help ensure even more kids in need have a safe, comfortable place to sleep.”
DFA associates from across Winnipeg gathered at the retailer’s flagship Ellice Avenue store early last week to assemble 20 bedframes that will be donated to local children as part of the 140-bed total donation.
Dufresne Furniture & Appliances not only donated mattresses to clear SHP Winnipeg’s current waiting list of children in need of a bed but have committed to partnering with the organization to continue supplying mattresses going forward, as its major mattress supplier and program partner.
“Having Dufresne Furniture & Appliances’ Dream Big program join us on our mission allowed us to immediately address our entire waiting list,” said Jim Thiessen, SHP Winnipeg chapter president. “Parents broke down in tears of gratitude when we phoned them to say we were ready to install beds for their children. This donation and partnership also allowed us to accept new applications for beds again and within weeks, over 60 families applied for a bed for their children, a testament to how large the need is in our community.”
The retailer’s Dream Big program will also be partnering with SHP throughout the year to host bed building events and tackle the continuing need for beds together, ensuring more children get off the floor and receive a ‘good night’s sleep’ sooner. To date, the program has given over 600 mattresses to kids in need in 12 communities across Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Northwestern Ontario.