Would you recommend Hollywood Food Coalition?
Volunteering at Hollywood Food Coalition is enjoyable and fulfilling. Right from my first visit, I found everyone to be friendly and welcoming, and the programs to be well-run with clear goals. Since then, I have returned to volunteer a few times every month. It’s been fun getting to know the other volunteers, but more importantly, it’s been rewarding getting food to the people that need it the most. One additional note: HFC takes ample safety precautions. All volunteers wear masks, sanitize their hands, and maintain a comfortable distance from each other. I have personally been extra cautious throughout the pandemic, and I feel completely safe volunteering here.
I have volunteered for many organizations over the years but I must say that Hollywood Food Coalition is the greatest! Whether you are preparing food for the nightly meal or serving dinner, you are surrounded by the most kind and dedicated staff and volunteers alike. I always leave feeling so grateful for the experience, and honored to be part of a team that serves the community with grace and dignity. Food is high quality and everyone is so friendly! They heavily rely on the help of volunteers so please make the time and come see for yourself.
I volunteer at HoFoCo because it is a place where life affirming activity is experienced by all who serve and by all whom are served... literally. For myself I have served dinners with my family to the hungry clientele, collected food as a ‘Pick Up Artist’ for over four years, washed dishes, prepared vegetables, driven the HoFoCo
van, and sat and communed with our marginalized fellow human beings. This place changes lives and and the world for the better and it is an honor to
volunteer in such a place where there is no question as to who you are or where you have come from. Equality and egalitarianism exude here❤️
I'm so grateful to have discovered this astonishing organization back in October, and have been volunteering there twice a week ever since.
Instead of serving nightly meals in the kitchen some blocks away, my time is dedicated to the Community Exchange: it's a more recent, quickly growing, and now-essential "branch" of the HoFoCo where rescued food that would otherwise go to waste is logged in, organized, and redistributed to an array of organizations in dire need of feeding their constituents.
The whole "reclaimed/rescued" food movement is of endless interest to me and experiencing the daily intake - from restaurants and hotels to small bakeries and local farms - is extremely rewarding. Then sending it back into the hands of a hungry population - well, I can't tell you how meaningful that is, and I've enjoyed the experience immensely. Everyone is fantastic!
They are in need of volunteers, so if you're curious, please join us! You won't regret it...
I am so very grateful to have found this organization! I started volunteering at the exchange in August, which is an experience I’d recommend to anyone interested in learning about food rescue. It is incredible to see how much food is donated + able to be moved around to get to people who need it! It is a fun, fast few hours that anybody would walk away from feeling so great about. It can be a great work out, but is suitable for absolutely anyone as there are SO MANY jobs to jump in on!
Since mid-September, I have participated in the Sunday lunch drive nearly every week. It is an absolute joy in my life: I have seen the program evolve + grow, met wonderful people, and been able to understand our impact + importance in the community. We have a blast on Sundays, and it’s been especially fun having friends/family join occasionally! HFC is an organization near + dear to me, I would encourage anyone to come hang out for an afternoon and see!
There are a ton of ways to get involved: I started volunteering their years ago, making fruit salads and doing general prep work for their amazing nightly meal program. I also helped to serve people in the evening (two separate daily shifts): incredibly satisfying to know that you're playing a role in providing people with what might be their only meal of the day (and knowing that it's a good one). Lately, I've been volunteering at their 2nd space, where all the food they rescue lands, to be sorted, culled and shared all over the city: I'm old, and I don't do a lot of the lifting and etc (great workout for folks who are young), but I help bag bagels, for instance, in smaller parcels (one of the cool things is that HFC figures out how to distribute manageable amounts of food to smaller orgs the can't use a bajillion pounds). Great energy, Maria & Genesis & Krys & Bonnie & Bryan, any one of whom might be kind of in charge, are fun, kind, clear in their instructions - lovely days!
This is going to be a little bit hard for you to understand, but I think it might do us both good if you tried.
We are a volunteer organization which prepares and serves a meal every day, seven days a week, throughout the year. At Thanksgiving and Christmas, when we need the least help, we are literally bombarded with offers like yours to bring "a group" to help us, and -- since I, too, am a volunteer, and I have a full time job -- I tend to become overwhelmed. How can I possibly satisfy our needs AND satisfy people like you, who, as well-meaning as you are, want to come on a certain date ONCE A YEAR?
It would be far better if you sat your group of teens down and read them in on the reality of homelessness, which is that homeless people have to eat EVERY DAY, not once a week and certainly not once a year.
Is it practical for you and the teens you're involved with to come and help us ON A REGULAR BASIS, at least once a week? If it isn't, I hate
A group I run volunteered before and we had a good experience initially. Everyone acted professionally and we banged it out. I was under the impression they were pleased w/ our service bc they made a fuss over us & specifically invited us back. When I tried to volunteer this year I contacted the website & asked abt a specific date, Ted contacted me the next day asking if we cld do confirm for another day. A few days later I confirmed and no response, I tried to confirm again& no response, I sent another message (as I have 8 ppl waiting for confirmation) & I got a disrespectful & condescending email from Ted explaining basically we shouldn't be trying to help this this time of year. We were obviously an annoyance to him. I would love to share the email but he wrote a very long detailed msg being extremely rude to me all the while stating he doesn't have time to reply to messages. This group is not local to us at ALL but we so had wanted to help anyway. Guess they just didn't need it.
GWHFC where so very welcoming to myself and my friend. We where passing by and asked if we could be of help and we where immediatly welcomed with open arms.I would strongly suggest working with this organization- they are genuine people who really have invested relationships with many that they service.
EVERYTHING was good. Well organized, streamlined. Truck is loaded, drive over and unload, set up tables, etc. The people who came for dinner were every bit as decent (and more) than the people you'd meet at the local eatery. Decent people, regular folk ... The food was healthy and substantial. Everybody cleaned up; the sidewalk was washed down ... The immediate neighborhood is industrial, not residential.... I'd do this again with this group in a heart beat.
My experience of handing over a plate of food has transformed my life – I would not have thought that it could but it has; as much as helping feed those who stand in line are impacted by the food on their plates, I have been impacted by their stories, the will to survive.
The individuals that line up for a hot meal, a cup of juice, and sweet are not just homeless, drug addicts, or have mental illness, they are also grandmothers/fathers that have very little retirement, teens who have been abused or thrown out, workers who have lost their jobs or are under waged, and now struggling to pay the bills.
Most of us choose to look beyond these individuals but the volunteers that help out can only see the face of humanity looking back at them, saying, “thank you”. I hope that one day I do not have to volunteer my nights anymore because there is plenty of food and shelter for everyone…until then I thank Peggy & Ted and the other volunteers.
I am a volunteer and a neighbor.
In response to one of your very negative reviews, I would like to inform the public that the GWHFC works hard to respect and respond to whatever requests the neighbors have made. The homeless on this food line do not go out and commit crimes after dinner. They help us clean up and go back to living on the streets. They are not criminals. Some of them are mentally ill. Some of them are addicts. Living on the streets is hard. They are courteous to the volunteers, appreciative of the food and human contact, and share with each other when there is little left to go around. If they were not fed and cared for, then they might go off, as would anyone, and commit crimes. But that is not the case. The GWHFC works hard to form a cooperative relationship with the businesses and residents near the corner on which the food line is held. It is a miraculous organization, working on a shoe string , to bring healthy food and kindness to those forgotten and less fortunate than most.
I helped the Food Coalition feed the homeless and hungry when I used to work around the corner from Romaine and Sycamore. It was a well-organized, kind group of people, from Ted and his wife Penny, to the regular volunteers, on down to the UCLA students who came along weekly to help out. The homeless and hungry people who attend these nightly meals are treated with respect and empathy, and in return, many of them show their appreciation by helping to clean up the area afterwards. Yes, as the previous reviewer states, some of them are addicted to drugs, or mentally ill. But understand, this is the 'front line' of Hollywood's destitute, the folks who are down and out and need food and water in order to survive another day. The Food Coalition cheerfully feeds these people hot, healthy meals, when nobody else even wants to look at them.