LOS ANGELES (CNS) — Los Angeles County Supervisor Janice Hahn announced Monday that $330,000 will be distributed to 11 nonprofit organizations that will use the funds to buy gift cards from local small restaurants and hand them out to local families in need.
"People are struggling," Hahn said in a statement. "Through no fault of their own, people have lost jobs and wages, and small businesses have been shuttered. We designed this program to get food on families' tables while at the same time supporting restaurants that are struggling right now."
The money will be distributed to nonprofits in Hahn's 4th Supervisorial District, which stretches along the coast from Marina del Rey to the South Bay, up through Lakewood and Whittier and as far east as Diamond Bar.
"2020 has been a very difficult year for a lot of families and local businesses," said Oscar Hernandez, the executive director of the Boys & Girls Club of Whittier, one of the participating nonprofits. "Thanks to Supervisor Janice Hahn, the Boys & Girls Club of Whittier will be working with our local school district partners to provide gift cards and vouchers to local restaurants. I think this a great idea that helps both families who are struggling while at the same time helping local restaurants in our area."
Additional participating nonprofits include:
- The Volunteer Center South Bay-Harbor-Long Beach;
- Community Family Guidance Center in Cerritos;
- Downey Unified School District's True Lasting Connections Family Resource Center;
- Feed and Be Fed in San Pedro;
- SBCC/South Bay Center for Counseling;
- Rowland Heights Chinese Association;
- New Horizons Caregivers Group in Hacienda Heights;
- Latinos in Action in Long Beach;
- Asian Empowerment Association in Long Beach; and
- YMCA of Greater Long Beach.
The money will come out of discretionary dollars available to Hahn's office. Of the total, $300,000 will be spent on gift cards, while $30,000 will be donated to the nonprofit organizations for their work in identifying families in need and distributing the cards.
The owner of Crepes & Grapes Cafe in Whittier expressed her gratitude.
"Our Supervisor Janice Hahn has created ways to help supply food to families in need while assisting many struggling businesses. As a restaurant owner myself, I am so grateful that I have the opportunity to partner in this endeavor, and I look forward to serving the Whittier community," said Sandra Hahn, who is not related to the supervisor.
Participating nonprofits are still in the process of selecting restaurants from which to purchase cards. Eateries are not required to have existing gift card programs to be chosen. Small restaurants that do not offer gift cards will be supplied with specially designed vouchers.