As your local REALTOR’s, our goal is to connect the South Bay community. Each month we support and connect neighbors by sharing what they are up to!
This month we are featuring Lend A Hand Club
We wanted to learn what the Lend a Hand Club was all about so we rolled up our sleeves and spent a Sunday morning volunteering with them. What we experienced was inspiring! The club meets most Sunday mornings at their fearless leader, Jack’s house on Stanford Ave. They gather for about an hour assemble sandwiches, mix juice and organize their blankets and donations. The morning was full of camaraderie, collaboration and energy. Kids gathered around a table swiping peanut butter and jelly, passing supplies from one to the next, all in the spirit of accomplishing their goal to put good back into the world. Once the last sandwich was wrapped the all the juice mixed we packed up the cars and headed out.
Here is where our time with the Lend A Hand Club was surprising. We have always heard giving out food on skid row is a humbling experience and it is, it makes you thankful for everything and everyone you have in your life. That we expected. What we were not expecting was witnessing the immense amount of leadership displayed by this group of high school students. The group was fearless in their interactions, handing out water, juice and sandwiches all with a smile. There is a sense of comfort and ease with the students you can tell their fearless leadership is a direct result of the guidance and protection of our neighbor Jack. He has been organizing Sundays just like this for at least 15 years. He is not only known in our neighborhood for doing so, but known among the inhabitants of Skid Row. He has a presence of a leader and a protector, with him it is apparent the students are free to come into their own as leaders and a source of inspiration. We were so inspired by this group and hope you are too!
Our interview with Lend A Hand Club’s current President, Margot:
When was Lend a Hand Club created and how did it begin?
Lend a Hand Club was created about 7 years ago when Sarah who had been going to skid row with Jack through his Church started this club at Mira Costa to give more students the opportunity to experience what she had experienced. After a few years the leadership graduated and the club fizzled out. Since my older brother had been in this club I knew about it and really wanted to be a part of it so I decided to start Lend a Hand Club again and establish it as an active club at Mira Costa.
What does Lend a Hand Club do?
As often as we can we take trips to skid row handing out sandwiches, lunch foods, clothing, shoes, blankets, and anything else we have to donate. We raise funds in order to continue paying for these trips, and we often do projects that come from Jack’s suggestions, like the Book Drive.
How does Lend a Hand Club acquire food and goods?
Students from Mira Costa raise funds through bake sales and donations, but we are always looking for more ways to raise funds and reaching more people who may want to donate.
What do you see possible for the future of Lend a Hand Club and members involved?
Lend a Hand Club is looking at pairing up with a mission down town, and also starting a mentor program with Middle Schools kids who go to Teen Center so we can show them how their actions can make a difference in their community.
How does Jack’s involvement in the club inspire all of you?
Jack Talerico is hands down the most generous person I have ever met in my life. He would donate the shoes from his feet or the coat from his back without thinking twice. He inspires me more and more every time we meet up. He is so kind and incredibly wise, always giving us advice for how to better ourselves and our community. I often feel like I need to write down everything he tells me because of the value of everything he says. He teaches me to be more generous, patient, and kind, but mostly he stresses the importance of listening to others and showing them that they are important which is something we can practice on our trips to skid row.
How can the community support Lend a Hand Club?
Any donations at all are extremely appreciated, whether its blankets, clothing, shoes, food, money to buy food, socks, or hygiene items like deodorant, soaps, or feminine products.
Items can be dropped off (in the bed of the pickup truck in driveway) at: 1135 Stanford Ave, RB 90278
To donate you can purchase a Lend A Hand Club t-shirt HERE!
People can also get involved with coming downtown – volunteers are ALWAYS welcome.
Contact Jack to volunteer or with any questions: 310-683-9383