As we prepare to celebrate a season of gratitude, we are reminded that not everyone in our city has the privilege of an abundant table. This holiday, take the time to give back; Thanksgiving food drives can have a profound impact in alleviating hunger and fostering a sense of community.
Join us as we explore the vital role of these initiatives in Los Angeles, highlighting the dedicated organizations and individuals working tirelessly to ensure that every Angeleno can experience the warmth and nourishment of a Thanksgiving meal. Together, let's embark on a journey of giving that transcends our own tables, embracing the true spirit of the season by making a meaningful difference in the lives of those in need.
Fred Jordan Missions hosts an annual Thanksgiving Feast, providing a “hot, traditional turkey dinner with all the trimmings” to ”hundreds of hungry men, women, and children on the streets of Skid Row.” Families may donate funds to be used for the Thanksgiving Feast. Visit their website for more information regarding volunteering at the Thanksgiving Feast.
Union Station has been working to end homelessness through various initiatives since 1973. In collaboration with SoCalGas, Union Station Homeless Services will be providing community meals at the Union Station Adult Center, located at 412 S. Raymond Ave., Pasadena, CA 91105. The event will be held on three days: Nov. 15 and Nov. 22 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Small, private sit-down dinners will also be available for residents on Thanksgiving day. Volunteers can sign up on their website.
Since 1982, Westside Thanksgiving has provided a free celebration during the season of giving. Attendees will be provided with a warm plate of food, clothing items of their choosing to keep, and a “mercado” of perishable and non-perishable items. While resources are mainly aimed for students, low-income families, seniors, and homeless individuals, all are welcome to partake in the festivities or volunteer. Volunteer registration opens Nov. 6 and can be done on their website. Volunteers can help on Nov. 22 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. and two five-hour shifts from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving day. The event will take place in the West LA Center Civic Center at 1645 Corinth Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90025.
Since 1998, Gobble Gobble Give has been delivering food, clothing and other essentials to homeless individuals across 18 cities on Thanksgiving morning. In 2019, nearly 33,000 meals were served. Volunteers are asked to sign up and can provide a dish of food (preferably cooked), small toiletry kits, or clothes and blankets to help individuals suffice in colder weather. There are multiple drop-off locations in LA including Downtown LA, Crenshaw, Hollywood and Santa Monica. Visit their website for more information.
For 11 years, Lost Angels has been providing food, clothing, and toiletries to residents in Venice. The nonprofit has served over 4,000 individuals, most of whom are unhoused. Apart from monetary donations, Lost Angels is asking for warm meals, toiletries, clothing, and blankets. The donation drive will take place Thanksgiving day from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. at 219 E Rose Avenue Los Angeles, CA 90291. There is a $10 fee to RSVP.
The Union Rescue Mission needs help ensuring that everyone has the opportunity to enjoy a special Thanksgiving meal. Individuals can help by serving a meal, donating funds, or donating time. This year, every $3.72 meal donation will also be doubled. Visit their website for more information.
The Midnight Mission needs help making sure that they can adequately serve all the men, women, and children that need a Thanksgiving meal. There are a number of ways to get involved including by making a monetary donation, donating time, and donating goods (food, clothing, and other essentials). Additionally, the annual Turkey Trot Los Angeles benefits The Midnight Mission. There is a 5K and 10K option as well as a “Widdle Wobble” for those 12 and under. Races have staggered start times on Thanksgiving morning. Details and registration information are available online.
Big Sunday’s Annual Thanksgiving Stuffing Event is scheduled for Wednesday, November 22nd from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Each year, Big Sunday packs bags full of Thanksgiving dinner for thousands of people, including vets, homeless families, women in domestic violence shelters, group homes, low-income families with autistic children, food pantries, schools, and more. Volunteers are needed to donate food as well as pack everything up. All volunteers are also invited to “join together for a community breakfast.”
Project Angel Food is a “community-funded organization” that prepares and delivers “over one million medically tailored meals each year, free of charge to homes of men, women, and children affected by life-threatening illnesses.” This Thanksgiving Day, Project Angel Food needs drivers to volunteer. Visit the website for more information. If you are unable to volunteer in person, individuals can still help by making a monetary donation to further their cause.