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Ottawa Area ISD's Career Learning Center students building beds for local kids

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Posted at 7:17 PM, May 11, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-12 09:37:24-04

HOLLAND, Mich. — Students at Ottawa Area ISD’s Career Learning Center worked on building beds for local children who needed them.

The project began after Ottawa Area ISD paraprofessional Kathy Kreps saw a post on Facebook about how many children in Ottawa County do not have a bed. The post was from a former student who works with the national nonprofit organization Sleep in Heavenly Peace. Kreps and Careerline Learning Center instructor John Boersma contacted Sleep in Heavenly Peace about how they could help. According to Boersma, the students were immediately eager to help when they learned about the project.

For such a large project, the Careerline Tech Center used the space and tools at Thompson M-TEC, another Ottawa Area ISD entity. Sleep in Heavenly Peace worked on ordering the material that students needed and having it delivered.

The Career Learning Center is for students to explore trade skills careers after high school. The process for making the beds included: operating a drill press, operating a miter saw, basic measuring, pocket hole drilling, staining, sanding with sanders, and staging materials. In total, the students built 12 beds.

“Our students got really dusty and dirty,” said Kreps. “And they loved it. Many told me they didn’t mind the dirt because they knew the end result was a little kid getting a real bed. They were so proud of themselves that they were able to make 12 beds that stayed in our community.”

“[The students] were offering to help with other builds, and to help with events that we may have in the future,” said Lisa Ghiardi, Chapter President for Sleep in Heavenly Peace Holland Chapter. “They jumped right in and took pride with the work they were doing and had fun while building.”

There is a community build this Saturday, May 14, starting at 10 a.m. in the Pure Barre parking lot at 90 Douglas Ave in Holland. You can pre-register online. No need to bring anything, all tools will be supplied, but work gloves are helpful.

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