Food on Foot – A Unique Solution to Homelessness
According to the LA Times, there’s over 44,000 homeless people in Los Angeles county…and the problem is getting worse.
Seems daunting, right?
Is there a solution? Yes.
The Los Angeles based nonprofit Food on Foot helps homeless people leave the streets with jobs, skills and confidence. With over 20 years experience, Food on Foot has proven methods that WORK.
Food on Foot accepts no government funds, thanks to the support from its generous donors and volunteers. With the help of people like you, Food on Foot’s homeless clients are nurtured without restrictions, and are given the quality time and assistance they need in order to leave the streets as self sustaining members of society.
So why do so many homeless people become “stuck” on the streets , and how can Food on Foot help?
Please read on to learn more…
Homelessness: it can happen to ANYONE
Dometra J. rebuilt her life after enduring Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
She did it again in 2008 after Hurricane Gustav destroyed her home.
One month later, Hurricane Ike slammed against the Louisiana shores.
Having nowhere to go, Dometra relocated to Los Angeles to try and pick up the pieces of her life.
Within several months of trying to find a job, Dometra ran out of money and found herself stranded on the streets of Los Angeles.
“Applying for minimum wage jobs as a homeless female was a very big challenge. I had no retail or restaurant experience because I held jobs that were in offices… costumer service, medical billing, and administrative assistant roles. I fall between the cracks because I don’t have a degree to get me in the door for the kinds of jobs I had before I was homeless.”
Dometra tried to receive help from government funded programs but didn’t qualify – She wasn’t on drugs or had mental illness, nor was she a victim of domestic violence.
Many people who are stuck on the streets begin to feel hopeless. With time, their confidence and self-esteem deteriorate. And this lack of inner belief is what stops many homeless people from trying to rebuild their lives and to gain back what they once had.
The solution to homelessness: Start with building CONFIDENCE!
Dometra was living on the streets of Skid Row when she received a flyer for Food on Foot’s Work for Food program.
She enrolled in the program and her life took a dramatic change.
The Work for Food program gave Dometra the empowering tools and resources she needed to leave the streets of Los Angeles. Better yet, the program, which is funded by individual donors, cost her absolutely nothing to attend.
So where’s Dometra now?
After participating in the program for close to six months, Dometra graduated with a proud life-skills education, a full-time job, housing she could afford, and the confidence needed to make her accomplishments long lasting.
Through the help of Food on Foot, Dometra now has a full-time job at Wally’s in Beverly Hills. She’s 100% self-sufficient and is living in her own apartment. Dometra also volunteers with Food on Foot where she mentors the homeless participants in the Work for Food program.
What exactly do the homeless receive while in the Work for Food program?
Ultimately, the homeless participants in the Work for Food program receive a full-time job and an apartment they can afford with that job. During this journey towards self sufficiency, Food on Foot assists their homeless clients with the following:
Life Skills Training:
- Job interview training
- Money management
- Crisis management
- Group therapy sessions
- Opportunities to give back by cleaning up trash and debris around Hollywood
- A full-time job (which Food on Foot helps find for each client)
- Rent for their fully-furnished apartment (while in the program)
- Work clothes
- Bus passes
- Cell phone
- Gym membership (to prepare the participants to stay 8 hours on their feet in a new job)
Once a participant accumulate $5,000 in paycheck savings from their full-time job, they graduate the program with a $5,000 savings account, their own full-time job, and an apartment they can afford. Most importantly, these (once homeless) clients graduate with a renewed sense of confidence. But it doesn’t stop there. Food on Foot graduates are also provided with the follow up and aftercare necessary to help them stay in their jobs and overcome obstacles as they arise during their first few months of employment.
Want to help? Be a volunteer!
As a volunteer, you can distribute food and clothing to the poor and homeless on any Sunday in Hollywood. We are kid friendly too! While you’re there, you will also listen to the stories from our Work for Food participants and graduates. Volunteering is a great way to give back while learning more about Food on Foot’s efforts in assisting the homeless off the streets.
Want to learn more? Watch the video below