Philanthropy Fridays – The Giving Spirit – giving survival backpacks to the homeless in Los Angeles – www.thegivingspirit.org

The Giving Spirit was started some years ago by a young man Tom Bagamane.

I am proud to say that our son James Segil ( father of our glorious grandsons) is on the board and every year at this time, he holds his birthday party at The Giving Spirit – inviting all his friends and family to help pack survival packs for the homeless  in Los Angeles, giving their time and donations rather than gifts to him. And this year our four and two year old grandsons will be joining him to help as well as the hundreds of volunteers,  our family and friends .

Please will you give your donations if you cannot join us in person? Go to www.TheGivingSpirit.org and donate on line as well as get the directions to the church  in Brentwood Los Angeles, which donates their congregational hall to the volunteers for storing, packing and distributing backpacks for the LA homeless.

Los Angeles has the largest population of homeless children and women in the country. Nearly 40% of all the homeless in LA, numbering over 19,000 are women and children under the age of 18. Not only are they the most vulnerable to every predator on the streets, they are the fastest growing segment of homelessness in the US.

Do you want to give them hope, sustenance and relief ?Then join us today, Friday December 16th and Saturday December 17th for The Giving Spirit’s (TGS) Annual Winter Reach Out  focused on seeking out and providing aid to homeless children and women. Gather together with folks from all over the city to assemble 1250 backpacks filled to the brim with all the essentials anyone would need seeking shelter from the winter cold. This is an ideal event for families and children of all ages to make a difference together while learning the truth about poverty and homelessness in LA.

After assembling the packs we will deliver them to over half a dozen TGS non-profit partners who provide tireless and selfless aid to our clients 365 days a year. Many of our shelter partners are specifically dedicated to helping women, children and families, these amazing organizations include: Covenant House, Downtown Women’s Center, Jeff Griffith Youth Center, San Fernando Valley, Rescue Mission, Stand Up for Kids and My Friend’s Place.  Spend quality time with our clients getting to know their stories and allowing them to reconnect to a world that has long since forgotten them.

Shelters are overflowing with families and young children. A substantial majority of LA’s 5000 homeless families are headed by a single mother. 45-50% of children in those families are below the age of 6. And the most horrific statistic – 13 homeless youths die on average every day in America.  Help us bring comfort, smiles and respite from the harsh realities of the streets to 1250 souls. Bring your kids, your friends, your school mates. Just come. And if you cant come – donate. $5, $10 – whatever you can afford. Go to www.TheGivingSpirit.org. Your donation is tax deductible!

We only have 100 volunteers registered with a goal of 400. Spread the word!

Testimonials:

 ..My 13 yr. old son and I had the most amazing experience at the Christmas
event. We unloaded trucks , packed the bags and hit the streets. The first
gentleman we approached who looked very much in need , turned us down and said there were others down the street who needed it more. This was a story we heard several times that day, along with guiding us to others in need “just down the block” or “sitting on the corner”.My son and I came away with the realization that not only are these folks just like us but many are kinder to those around them than some of our more affluent friends. A real eyeopener. The sad story however was a lovely lady who has been sitting on a bus bench at PCH and Sunset for over a month reading her Bible. We attempted to gift her with our bag and blanket and she refused us saying she was just waiting for her ride and couldn’t take all our stuff. That was her reality and how she survives on the street, she is still sitting there, wish we could have helped her.”

“Hi I’m Francine and I am a current student at Los Osos High School. I’ve always wanted to get out and go do something good for my community but I never knew how. The year, when my former spanish teacher, Mrs. Hartz, told me about The Giving Spirit I joined in a heartbeat. This is exactly how I wanted to give back to my community. I’ve grown up in an affluent community and I never thought about how serious the homeless situation was until I participated in the L.A. event in December of last year. At first I was afraid and then I realized that the homeless are human beings, human beings just as much as you and me. It was depressing to realize that there were so many people with absolutely nothing and we weren’t even seeing the majority of them. Our day was long and demanding but totally worth
it. One woman was so grateful for the duffel bag and blanket we gave her that she began to cry. The TGS event in L.A. was a life changing experience, I can’t even describe the feeling. I hope that more people join this cause. We are all so priviledged and I know we can all give something, even if its just a smile or a “hello”.”

PLEASE JOIN US – DONATE AT www.THEGIVINGSPIRIT.org.

And thank you for your kindness – it will spread a thousand points of gratitude this holiday season.

About Grandma

I have reinvented myself many times during my life -teacher, lawyer, business woman, CEO, Entrepreneur, Board member, Professor, Mom, Wife, Farmer, Chef, Musician, Author and now my best role of all - Grandma to multiple grandchildren, grandnephews and nieces worldwide.
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