Homeboy Industries and One Voice, two community-based organizations, put together holiday parties over Winter Break that many Marlborough students volunteered at and helped organize. These parties not only allowed Marlborough students to give back to their community, but also to participate in various activities to celebrate the holidays.
The Homeboy Holiday Party, held on Saturday, Dec. 23 at the Homeboy campus in Downtown Los Angeles, welcomed underprivileged families to participate in games and activities to celebrate the holiday season. Homeboy Industries employees receive job training in addition to education, job placement and substance abuse treatment. They hold the annual party to relieve families’ stress during the holidays. The party also provides the employees’ children an opportunity to play carnival games, indulge in a variety of different foods and open gifts. The children who participated in the event won tickets for prizes, snapped pictures in the photo booth and took part in various giveaways, including meals from Homegirl Cafe.
Lily ’20 was one of five student coordinators of the Homeboy Holiday Party.
“We created and built the carnivals games and set up for the big event. The day of the holiday party, I was in charge of surveying the games and making sure everything ran smoothly,” Lily said.
As a second year participant in the event, Lily saw the impact this party had on the families. She said being a coordinator of the event made the experience rewarding and is eager to participate again.
“Because this was my second year working with the organization, I got the opportunity to see the lives of the kids and their families evolve,” Lily said.
One Voice, another organization helping families during the holidays, held a holiday program on Thursday, Dec. 14 at the Santa Monica Airport. Sadie ’20 was one of the volunteers who packed food for families before Christmas.
“It was very packed and full of people packaging items such as food and toys to put in boxes that would then be sent out to help families during the holidays. In the course of two nights, food and toys are distributed among seven distribution centers across Los Angeles,” Gerber said.
The Holiday Food Program annually provides Christmas baskets, toys and books to 2,500 families living in poverty in the Los Angeles area. Sadie felt this opportunity to help families was important and looks forward to participating in the future.
“The action of helping families during the holidays made this experience extremely special to me, as I was giving back to my community,” Sadie said.