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Nye County Sleep in Heavenly Peace prepping for fundraisers

When Carmen Murzyn started her journey with Ms. Senior Golden Years USA, she had no way of knowing that the decision to become a contestant in the 2019 pageant would eventually result in her becoming the leader of an entirely different organization but now, two years later, she is happily entrenched as the president of the Nye County Chapter of Sleep in Heavenly Peace.

It all came about as a result of her need to select a platform for the pageant and, casting around for something that truly made her heart glow, Murzyn ultimately landed on Sleep in Heavenly Peace.

At the time, the Nye County chapter was headed by chapter founder Gary Bennet and once Murzyn learned just what that nonprofit’s mission was, there was no looking back. She just knew that it was something she wanted to be involved in, not just for the short term but for many years to come and it wasn’t long before Bennet turned over the reins.

A national nonprofit dedicated to ensuring that all children have a safe, comfortable bed to call their own, Sleep in Heavenly Peace draws together volunteers to construct brand new beds, complete with new mattresses and bedding, that are then donated to families in need.

“We fully believe that a bed is a basic need for the proper physical, emotional and mental support that a child needs,” the Sleep in Heavenly Peace website details. “All children deserve a safe, comfortable place to lay their heads… Across the U.S., too many boys and girls go without a bed, or even a pillow, to sleep on. These children end up sleeping on couches, blankets and even floors. This can affect their happiness and health.”

Over the past two years, Murzyn has worked diligently to raise awareness about the local chapter of Sleep in Heavenly Peace and with the holidays swiftly approaching, she and her fellow volunteers are gearing up for a holiday-themed fundraiser that will go a long way in helping the organization finance the continuation of its mission to give children a bed of their very own, somewhere they can go every night to snuggle in and dream the fancies of childhood.

The Nye County Chapter of Sleep in Heavenly Peace will be hosting a Photos with Santa fundraiser over the course of two weekends following Thanksgiving, giving area residents the chance to head out and get some fantastic photos of their youngsters, themselves, their entire family and even their furry friends, all while contributing to a valuable local nonprofit with a goal that everyone can get behind.

This will be the second year running that Sleep in Heavenly Peace will be holding Photos with Santa, with last year their first attempt at the fundraiser. With the pandemic in full stride at the time, the total attendance at the events wasn’t quite what the group had hoped for but this year, now that the COVID-19 health concerns have diminished, they are all optimistic that the turnout will be prodigious. Anyone with a desire to do something that will have a profound and lasting impact on the lives and health of the next generation is encouraged to make their way to the fundraiser.

Photos with Santa will take place Friday and Saturday, Nov. 26 and 27 from 2 to 7 p.m. as well as Sunday, Nov. 28 from 3 to 7 p.m. The event will return the next weekend too, with pictures being taken on Friday, Dec. 3 from 2 to 7 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 5 from 3 to 7 p.m. The fundraiser will take place at the Salvation Army, 721 S. Buol Road, near Star Nursery.

Photos will cost $8.50 for one or $15 for two and all photos will be printed instantly on site. Patrons will be given a choice of sitting with Santa or posing in front of a festive holiday backdrop. Little presents and candy canes will be given out to all children and there will even be a few treats on hand for the pets. Patrons can either make an appointment for a specific time slot or else simply walk in the day of to get their photos taken.

While Sleep in Heavenly Peace gears up for the Photos with Santa events, donations of Christmas decorations to make the photography area as festive as possible would be much appreciated. Unfortunately, much of what the organization had already amassed has been stolen, so anyone with decorations they could contribute is asked to contact Murzyn to arrange for those decorations to be picked up.

Outside of the fundraiser itself, Murzyn said she is also pushing to get families to sign up for the free beds that Sleep in Heavenly Peace donates, as without those families, the group’s mission cannot be fulfilled.

“Please, people who need beds, or those who know somebody who needs beds, go online and sign up. You go to www.SHPBeds.org and fill out the form, which will then be forwarded to me,” Murzyn emphasized. “I just know there are kids out there who need beds and we want to make sure they have them. So please contact us. Especially before Christmas, you know. There are all kinds of kids looking forward to getting presents but there are others who are just wishing for a bed instead of toys. We want to fill that need.”

For more information on the Nye County Chapter of Sleep in Heavenly Peace, to make a donation of decorations or cash, or to make an appointment for Photos with Santa, contact Murzyn at 775-910-8921.

For more on Sleep in Heavenly Peace as a whole visit www.SHPBeds.org

Contact reporter Robin Hebrock at rhebrock@pvtimes.com

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