Wisconsin Nicaragua Partners works to ship 500 mattresses to Nicaragua
By Taylor Hale
PORTAGE COUNTY – On March 22, Wisconsin Nicaragua Partners of the Americas (WNP) worked with volunteers to load 500 mattresses supplied by an anonymous donor to the hurricane-stricken country.
“Normally we wouldn’t accept that quantity, we sent out 11 (mattresses) in November,” said WNP Organizer Amy Wiza. “But I couldn’t turn it down because I know what people sleep on or don’t sleep on in Nicaragua, and I know what the hurricanes did to a lot of families.”
The mattresses were display beds that have had the ends cut off for display purposes, though they are still fully functional and in new condition. Volunteers in Nicaragua will sew custom-fitted sheets for the beds and create bed frames made from wooden pallets.
“A lot of the time, people in Nicaragua will sleep in hammocks or old mattresses, they just don’t have the selection we do, and the hurricane brought heavy rains and flooding that caused a lot of damages to homes,” Wiza said.
Around 50 percent of the mattresses will go to Nicaraguan Fire departments while the remaining beds will be distributed to hurricane survivors and other families in need. Over 100 sets of fire department turnout gear and 20 helmets were also packed to be sent to Nicaragua.
“It’s important to give back when we can,” said Mayor Mike Wiza. “This shipment is larger than others, but it’s just about the effort.”
The mattresses will be shipped to Nicaragua by the U.S. Airforce over the coming months, though no set shipment date is scheduled at the time of writing. WNP is accepting bedsheets to aid Nicaraguans in need.
For more information, call 715-346-4702 or email [email protected]