Hero Of The Month

H-Town Hero of the Month: Gary Akin


Often, the biggest heroes in Houston make their difference in the community out of the spotlight. One such hero prefers to do it that way and works tirelessly to ensure that no child sleeps on the floor.

Gary Akin, the chapter co-president of Sleep in Heavenly Peace (SHP), Houston North chapter, exemplifies the spirit of community and charity. SHP is a nationwide nonprofit dedicated to building and delivering beds to children who don’t have a bed to sleep in.

 Under Gary’s leadership, the Houston North chapter has transformed the lives of countless families, bringing comfort and hope to those in need.

The Origin of SHP

Sleep in Heavenly Peace began as a small community project in Idaho in 2012, founded by Luke & Heidi Mickelson. The initiative quickly grew as the need for beds became even more evident.

Today, SHP boasts chapters across the United States, all committed to ensuring that “no kid sleeps on the floor in our town,” as their slogan says. The organization’s mission is straightforward but profound: to provide a safe and comfortable place for every child to rest their head at night.

Gary Akin’s Involvement

Gary Akin’s journey with SHP started with a desire to give back to the community. As co-president of the Houston North chapter, he has been instrumental in organizing bed-building events, fundraising, and spreading awareness about the organization’s mission even now as a youthful 86-year-old!

Gary’s leadership and dedication have helped SHP Houston North reach new heights, building hundreds of beds and delivering them to families in need.

Impact on the Community

The impact of SHP’s work in Houston is immeasurable. For many children, a bed is not just a piece of furniture but a symbol of stability and security. Having a bed to call their own can significantly improve a child’s quality of life, affecting their physical health, emotional well-being, and academic performance.

Gary Akin and his team have seen firsthand the difference a bed can make in a child’s life, often receiving heartfelt gratitude from the families they assist.

The Bed-Building Process

SHP’s bed-building process is a community effort. Much like the adage, “It takes a village to raise a child,” volunteers from all walks of life come together to build, sand, and assemble beds.

These events are not only productive but also foster a sense of camaraderie and purpose among participants. Gary emphasizes the importance of community involvement, noting that every volunteer hour and donation directly contributes to the organization’s ability to serve more children.

Stories of Hope

Behind every bed delivered by SHP is a story of hope. Gary recalls numerous instances where the simple act of receiving a bed has brought joy and relief to families.

The stories they hear are a common scenario in Houston. A single mother struggling to provide basic necessities for her children. A family dealing with a traumatic loss of their home due to a hurricane. Families facing severe medical issues that drain their finances. No matter the situation, the one common thread is that there are good people in need of a ray of hope.

When the children of these families finally have a bed to call their own, their excitement upon receiving their new beds can penetrate even the most stoic of hearts. These moments are a powerful reminder of why SHP’s mission is so crucial to the community.

Challenges and Triumphs

Like any nonprofit, SHP Houston North faces challenges, from securing funding to managing logistics. However, Gary’s unwavering commitment and the support of the community have enabled the chapter to overcome these obstacles.

Fundraising events, corporate sponsorships, and individual donations are all vital to sustaining the organization’s efforts. Gary’s strategic approach to building partnerships has been key to the chapter’s success.

Looking Ahead

Gary Akin envisions a future where SHP can expand its reach even further, ensuring that no child in Houston has to sleep on the floor. He is passionate about growing the volunteer base and increasing community engagement. By raising awareness and fostering a culture of giving, Gary hopes to inspire more people to join the cause and support SHP’s mission.

Join Gary’s Passionate Cause

Gary’s story is a shining example of how one person’s commitment to a cause can ripple through a community, bringing about lasting change.

That commitment and leadership are why we, in partnership with AIRTEAM Heating & Cooling, have chosen Gary Akin as Grizzy’s Hood News first ever, H-Town Hero Of The Month. Gary embodies the spirit of compassion and action, inspiring others to make a difference in the lives of those in need.

For more information on how to get involved or support SHP, visit Sleep in Heavenly Peace’s website. Together, we can ensure that every child has a bed to sleep in and a brighter future to look forward to.


Share this post :

Hero Of The Month
Latest News

Subscribe Now

* indicates required