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No Child Should Go Without Sweet Dreams says AberNecessities

By Kirsty Brown

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The latest campaign from north-east children’s charity AberNecessities, No Child Should Go Without Sweet Dreams, has focussed on raising awareness and funds to provide underprivileged children with a good night's sleep.

The charity aimed to raise enough funding to provide at least 50 beds for some of Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire’s most vulnerable children.

To date, AberNecessities has helped over 130 children who previously did not have a suitable bed of their own to sleep in.

The number of beds supplied has risen steeply in the last six months with over 45 beds provided in the last two months alone.

The exact figure of how many children in the UK are without a bed is unknown, however, since the pandemic AberNecessities has seen a 900 percent increase in applications from families who are struggling to provide the basic essentials.

Referrals from health care professionals are asking for bed and mattress donations for children sleeping on broken, no longer fit-for-purpose beds, sharing with parents or siblings, or in some cases, simply sleeping on the floor.

To enable AberNecessities to help more kids than ever before, Sainsbury’s Furniture Store will be providing quality children’s beds and mattresses at cost price and generously supplying a free delivery and set-up service for each bed purchased.

Just £165 can provide a child with a quality bed, mattress and cosy bedding to ensure they have a safe place to rest their head.

The charity have also been creating and distributing Snug As A Bug bundles (priced at £60) via their dedicated referral system, which includes pyjamas, cosy slippers, a hot water bottle, a story book and a teddy bear.

Locals, businesses and supporters can donate directly to the appeal through the Just Giving page.

Business owner Philip Sainsbury said: “When I first heard about AberNecessities I was touched both by the fantastic work they do, but also about the level of deprivation in such an affluent city as Aberdeen.

“I wanted to do something to give back to the community in which Sainsbury’s Furniture has been a proud part of since 1932.

"Donating beds seemed like the least I could do to help support such a brilliant cause.”

AberNecessities founder Danielle Flecher-Horn said: “Sleep is such a basic need of a child and young person’s development however, sadly for many children in this city, it is a need not being met.

"When a child does not get a good night’s sleep, they can find concentrating at school more difficult which in turn hinders their learning.

"Behavioural problems can also become common due to increased levels of anxiety, stress, irritability and forgetfulness.

"Every child deserves a good night's sleep to help them learn, grow and thrive.

“We’re incredibly grateful to Philip and everyone at Sainsbury’s Furniture for the incredible level of support they’ve given us.

"We can’t thank them enough for their help and we appreciate it immensely.”

Sleep is a fundamental part of a child’s development and sleep deprivation can exacerbate a number of mental, physical and emotional health conditions making it increasingly difficult for children to meet their full potential.

Recent research released by Place2Be for Children’s Mental Health Week 2019 suggests that children with less sleep are more likely to struggle with worries leading to increased levels of stress.

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