On August 21, 2020 one of our interns, Montserrat Pineda organized a food-distribution in North Long Beach. The food distribution was able to help feed over 100 families in Long Beach and those who live in the Ramona Park Neighborhood. The event was possible thanks to the support of the City Special Events Department, Congressman Lowenthal’s Office, Rex Richardson’s office and LBCEI.
As an intern with LBCEI, I had the opportunity to create an intern project. I wanted to make sure that my project would allow me to use all the skills I gained over summer but also gave back to my community. I joined LBCEI because of the work they were doing around inclusion I knew that I wanted to be a part of it. Inclusion to me means allowing everyone to have a seat at the table, allowing everyone’s voice to be heard, and it provides resources to those who need the most. I knew that I wanted to center my intern project around the same goals.
Since the pandemic hit, I noticed that food security became an issue in my neighborhood. People began losing their jobs, the elderly couldn’t go to the grocery store, and there weren’t any food banks at walking distance. I knew I wanted to do something to help support my community, that is where the idea of organizing a food distribution came to mind. While wanting to organize this food distribution the first obstacle I had to face was that I had never organized one before. I ran into many obstacles afterwards but I knew that I really wanted to accomplish my goal of feeding 100 families in my own neighborhood.
Planning the event was no easy process I’ll always remember the pages and pages of spreadsheets, the late-night calls, and the very hot weather endured while collecting donations. All of the moments I experienced and all the obstacles I faced will definitely be something that I will always remember. Without those experiences I would have never reached my goal, I was able to feed over 100 families the day of the distribution and I wouldn’t change anything from my experience.