At-Risk Youth Working to Build a Better Community

PRESS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

CONTACT: Kitty Davis-Walker

(213) 673-4585 or (213) 507-5562

Email: kwalker@urm.org

 

“HELP & HOPE COMES IN THE FORM OF AT- RISK YOUTH WORKING TO BUILD A BETTER COMMUNITY”

 

Sylmar California (April 22, 2010) — On Saturday, April 24, 2010 more than 100 youth volunteers from Bel Air Presbyterian Church and Cloud & Fire Ministries will converge on the grounds of the Union Rescues Mission’s Hope Gardens Family Center as they have for the past year building, repairing, constructing and restoring buildings around this Oasis of Hope nestled in the foothills of Sylmar California.  Activities for this Day of Service will begin with a brief program and special visit from Councilman Richard Alarcon.  

 

Who: Union Rescue Mission’s Hope Gardens Family Center in partnership with Bel Air Presbyterian Church and Cloud & Fire Ministries (YouthBuild) will showcase the extensive construction work done by the helpful hands of at-risk youth from Cloud & Fire Ministries.

 

What: A Ribbon Cutting Ceremony celebrating the completion of Bel Air Presbyterian Church and Cloud and Fire Ministries (YouthBuild) team will start the Day of Service by putting the finishing touches on a wing of classrooms to be dedicated on this day at noon.

 

Where: URM’s Hope Gardens Family Center located 12249 North Lopez Canyon Road, Sylmar California 91342.

 

When: Saturday, April 24, 2010 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

 

Why: To assist the Union Rescue Mission in providing a beautiful campus of quality transitional housing for senior women and single mothers with children experiencing homelessness.

 

Union Rescue Mission CEO, Andy Bales said “The youth from Cloud and Fire have transformed Hope Gardens’ educational wing with their tremendous work, and have impacted other children and youth for years to come”. 

 

About Hope Gardens Family Center

Hope Gardens Family Center a program of Union Rescue Mission is a Transitional

Housing and Permanent Supportive Housing campus that gives single mothers and their children, and senior women experiencing homelessness a chance to move out of despair and rebuild their lives. Hope Gardens Family Center helps women transition from homelessness to independence within 12 to 36 months through long-term rehabilitation programs, services and spiritual care designed to support and empower each individual and family. For more information, please visit our website urm.org

Subway to serve 2,000 Sandwiches

MEDIA ALERT – For Immediate Release

CONTACT: Kitty Davis-Walker

(213) 673-4585 or (213) 507-5562

Email: kwalker@urm.org


SUBWAY RESTAURANTS JOIN THE UNION RESCUE MISSION WITH

TOY DRIVE FUND-RAISER AND HOLIDAY MEAL SERVICE FOR THE HOMELESS

LOS ANGELES CALIF. – —– On Tuesday, December 22, 2009 Volunteers from Los Angeles-area SUBWAY restaurants will once again work with the Union Rescue Mission in down town Los Angeles to serve a meal and help brighten the lives of men, women and children experiencing homelessness during the Holiday Season.

For the 13th consecutive year, Subway volunteers will prepare and serve ham and turkey sandwiches for the homeless on skid row in Los Angeles. The annual Subway volunteer effort serves approximately 2, 000 meals. To date, Subway volunteers have served over 25,000 meals during this annual giving event. This year’s Subway volunteer meal service will take place on Tuesday, December 22nd at the Union Rescue Mission. Preparations begin at 9:00 a.m. with meals served from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

In addition to the annual volunteer meal service, Los Angeles-area Subway store owners conducted a fundraiser and collected over $16,000 to benefit the Union Rescue Mission’s annual toy program for underprivileged children. Approximately 1,000 families will be invited to shop for Free toys and gifts for their children at the Missions 18th Annual Christmas Store. The (URM) Christmas Store is open to participants in the Mission’s programs as well as to a select group of organizations helping people who are experiencing homelessness and poverty in the Skid Row community.

The Union Rescue Mission (URM) is a non-profit organization dedicated to serving people who are experiencing homelessness, providing emergency services, comprehensive prevention and rehabilitation programs to break the cycle of poverty. (URM) is the nations largest and L.A.’s oldest rescue mission. Services for women and children, in particular have been expanded to meet the needs of this fastest-growing segment of the population experiencing homelessness. On any given night, more than 10,000 families and 18,000 children are without food or shelter in Los Angeles County.

The Union Rescue Mission receives no government funding and is solely supported through the generosity of individuals, foundations and corporations. (URM) is located at 545 South San Pedro Street, in Downtown L.A., 90013.

For information about URM please visit the website urm.org or contact: Kitty Davis-Walker (213) 673-4585 or Shaeideh Prince at (213) 347-6352.

Annual Christmas Store Opening Up!

UNION RESCUE MISSION to hold 18th Annual CHRISTMAS STORE

ON DECEMBER 18TH & 19TH

“1,000 Families In Need Invited to Shop for Free

LOS ANGELES, CALIF. (December 18 & 19, 2009) — More than 2,000 children will receive Christmas gifts this year after their parents shop for presents at the Union Rescue Mission’s (URM) 18th Annual Christmas Store starting on Friday, December 18 at 9:00 a.m. to closing at 6:00 p.m. and again on Saturday, December 19 from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. at URM headquarters located at 545 South San Pedro St. in downtown Los Angeles.

Union Rescue Mission CEO, Andy Bales, said “It’s our joy to provide an opportunity for a unique shopping experience to 1000 families that might otherwise miss out on the joy of personally giving gifts to their children at Christmas”.                                                     

URM, and the Missions offsite facility for mothers and children, Hope Gardens Family Center as well as neighboring missions and service providers helping children and families on Skid Row will be invited to shop free of charge. With so many families in need this year, our goal for 2009 is to provide enough gifts to meet the needs of 1000 families. These families will be given tickets to shop for Christmas gifts in the Mission’s Christmas Store.

 Mothers and fathers will be assisted by volunteers to pick one toy or gift for each of their children ages infant through 17 years.  They will then be assisted in wrapping the gifts in the department store like atmosphere.  While parents shop, kids will experience a visit to our Kid Zone where they will enjoy holiday crafts, games, and treats and also shop for their parents in their own special store.

Each Year URM’s Annual Christmas Store is made possible through the generosity of private donors, and partnering corporations and companies like Verizon, SUBWAY restaurants, Shea Homes and ERA Realtors to name a few.

 

Schedule of Events:

  • Moms begin Shopping for their children…………………………9:30 a.m.
  • Children retreat to Kid Zone….…………………………………..9:30 a.m.    

ALL MEDIA are encouraged to attend.

Union Rescue Mission is a non-profit organization dedicated to serving people experiencing homelessness.  Established in 1891, URM is one of the largest rescue missions of its kind in the United States and the oldest in Los Angeles.  It provides a comprehensive array of emergency and long-term services, including food, shelter, clothing, medical and dental care, Christian recovery programs, transitional housing, legal assistance, education, counseling, and job training to needy men, women, children, and families.  For more information please visit our website at urm.org

Union Rescue Mission to Hold Annual Thanksgiving Street Festival

MEDIA ALERT – For Immediate Release

 

CONTACT: Kitty Davis-Walker

(213) 673-4585 or (213) 507-5562

Email: kwalker@urm.org

 

UNION RESCUE MISSION TO SERVE THREE THOUSAND THIS SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 21st

AT ANNUAL THANKSGIVING STREET FESTIVAL 2009

 

LOS ANGELES CALIF. (November 17, 2009) —– This Saturday November 21, 2009 Union Rescue Mission (URM), CEO Andy Bales will be joined by 300 volunteers at 11: 00 a.m. to transform San Pedro Street into a diners paradise.  This year’s festival is sponsored by Bank of America/Merrill Lynch and will feature a delicious Thanksgiving meal, live entertainment, lots of give-a-ways and a Kids Zone that’s sure to be a big hit with children and those acting like children.  

URM staff and volunteers will serve up plates of Cajun fried and Oven Roasted Turkey, stuffing with gravy, mash potato’s, green bean casserole, candied yams and much more to over 3,000 men, women and children experiencing homelessness on Skid Row this holiday season. Herbalife’s Smoothie mobile will also be on hand serving their signature smoothies.

Union Rescue Mission’s CEO Andy Bales said “We are honored to invite all of our friends experiencing homelessness over for this very special Thanksgiving dinner, made and served with love!  We hope that it will be a life changing event and one that starts the journey home for many.  Thanks to our community for providing the resources to make this possible!”

 

When:                  Saturday, November 21, 2009.  200 Turkeys will be deep fried on San Pedro St.

                                  beginning @ 1:30 a.m.

Event Time:    11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

Where:                Union Rescue Mission

                                  545 South San Pedro Street (between 5th & 6th on San Pedro)

Why:                    Union Rescue Mission along with major sponsor Bank of America/Merrill Lynch, and

                                KJLH Radio Free will continue to bring people together as long as there is a need for

                                hope & healing. 

Note: The visuals of 20 turkey fryers cooking 200 turkeys in the middle of the night (1:30 a.m.) for people experiencing homeless is a great photo & film opportunity.  Also, the Kid Zone activities, rock climbing, bouncers, arts & crafts and interactive games.

 

About Union Rescue Mission

Union Rescue Mission is a non-profit organization dedicated to serving the poor and homeless. Established in 1891, URM is one of the largest rescue missions of its kind in the United States and is the oldest in Los Angeles.  It provides a comprehensive array of emergency and long-term services, including food, shelter, clothing; medical and dental care; Christian recovery programs, transitional housing, legal assistance, education, counseling and job training to needy men, women, children and families. For more information, please visit our website urm.org

Initiative to End Homelessness in Los Angeles

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT: Kitty Davis-Walker

(213) 673-4585 or (213) 507-5562

Email: kwalker@urm.org

                                           

Initiative to End Homelessness in Los Angeles

 

WHAT: Union Rescue Mission is hosting a press conference with community leaders and organizations helping people experiencing homelessness.  The purpose of the press conference is to announce an initiative to end homelessness as we know it in greater Los Angeles.

 

WHEN: Wednesday, October 28, 2009

                  10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.

 

WHERE:  Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels  – Courtyard

                  555 W. Temple Street, Los Angeles, 90012

                    

WHY:  Because it is time for the people of Los Angeles to rise up and take positive action to bring an end to the homelessness epidemic in our community.  It is time to replace homelessness with hopefulness.  Hope for a better life off the streets and help from those individuals and organizations who can pull together to make this a reality.

 

 

 Union Rescue Mission CEO, Andy Bales, said “We cannot live up to our name, the City of Angels, while leading the Nation with the highest numbers of people living on the streets of our City.  With your help, we are launching an initiative to reduce the population of people on the streets of Skid Row by 90% in 3 years, cut the number of people who are homeless in LA County by 50% in 7 years, and in 10 years end Los Angeles’ reign as the homeless Capitol of the United States. You are the Mission to end homelessness!”

 

 

About Union Rescue Mission

Union Rescue Mission is a non-profit organization dedicated to serving people experiencing homelessness. Established in 1891, URM is one of the largest rescue missions of its kind in the United States and is the oldest in Los Angeles.  It provides a comprehensive array of emergency and long-term services, including food, shelter, clothing; medical and dental care; Christian recovery programs, transitional housing, legal assistance, education, counseling, and job training to needy men, women, children and families.  For more information, please visit urm.org.

New Los Angeles City Attorney Endorses Cedillo Bill on Counterfeit Goods

(Los Angeles) – State Senator Gilbert Cedillo, Shelter Partnership, and Los Angeles City Attorney Carmen Trutanich gathered atop the Union Rescue Mission in the early morning sun to announce the new city attorney’s support for SB 324 and urged the Governor to sign the bill.

SB 324 would enable confiscated counterfeit goods to be donated to non-profits serving families and individuals experiencing homelessness or economic hardship. Shelter Partnership approached Cedillo, who has authored several bills on homelessness issues, with an opportunity to repurpose the goods. Under current law upon conviction or close of the case all counterfeit items are destroyed by incineration or dumped into landfills. Ruth Schwartz, Executive Director of Shelter Partnership which runs a 108,000 sq. foot clearinghouse of donated goods that are distributed to local service provides, and the attorney responsible for the Identity Theft and Fraud Unit in the Office of the City Attorney worked with Cedillo to draft the language of the bill. Provisions were made in the bill to protect intellectual property rights and electronics so items such as DVDs and televisions would not be included. SB 324 does enable the prosecuting attorney to ask the judge to permit a trademark owner to donate the goods rather than destroying items at the close of a case.

“Each year, law enforcement agencies seize millions of dollars in counterfeit merchandise. And make no mistake – we are fully committed to aggressively prosecuting those who illegally profit from prated trademarks. Yet in almost all of those cases, the merchandise seized is destroyed by court order. I am proud to stand here with my friend Gil Cedillo and Downtown LA’s hard-working service providers in support of good common-sense legislation,” remarked Trutanich. 

The numbers of families and individuals encountering homelessness is equally concerning. At the press conference Rev. Andy Bales, the CEO of Union Rescue Mission, shared stories from the past year on the “tsunami” of people seeking assistance at the facility. Of the 223 families seeking shelter at URM from January through August of this year, 52.4% were experiencing homelessness for first time; 84.1% reported receiving benefits of some sort. The primary causes leading to homelessness were financial hardship, eviction, or job loss.

“The numbers and increases are incredible, but the picture of the many families living in tent like structures, called EDARS, in our chapel, community rooms, and conference rooms is an even more amazing sight to behold. The volume of people who get in line for one of our nine meals per day is also staggering,” shared the Reverend. “We need to recommit ourselves to the issue of homelessness and continuously push for creative options to help families and individuals stay in their homes or quickly recover; SB 324 is one of those options. I urge the Governor to sign this bill.” 

“I am honored to have the support of the city’s new City Attorney Carmen Trutanich and appreciate the significant contributions the office has made to SB 324 over the past year. I am also grateful to partner with Shelter Partnership, URM, and the other service providers to bring about the basic, and more impertinently the systemic changes, needed to end homelessness. I hope the Governor will sign the bill and put good intentions to work.”

Christmas in July – Media Alert

MEDIA ALERT

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

20 TONS OF SNOW WILL COVER DOWNTOWN LA JULY 15TH
SUBWAY RESTAURANTS & SANTA Join Forces with LA Sparks Mascot Sparky
To Create “Christmas In July”
AT THE UNION RESCUE MISSION

LOS ANGELES CALIF. (July 13, 2009) —– On Wednesday July 15, 2009, over 20 tons of snow will blanket the Downtown Los Angeles Union Rescue Mission. Santa will transform URM (545 South San Pedro Street) into a winter wonderland so that more than 200 homeless youngsters –who range in age from 3 to 17, can enjoy a special early Christmas celebration.

“Christmas In July” is sponsored by SUBWAY restaurants and will feature mountains of snow, colorful elves, Sparky and dozens of gaming booths along with treats like cotton candy, snow cones, popcorn and more.  Each child will receive a toy from Santa Clause and will also be treated to a delicious lunch catered by SUBWAY.

Festivities will get underway at 11:00 a.m., on Wednesday, July 15, 2009 in the San Julian parking lot located just behind the Union Rescue Mission, 545 South San Pedro Street, in Los Angeles. (on San Julian Street between 5th & 6th Streets)

Union Rescue Mission’s CEO, Andy Bales said “I can’t think of a better way to lift the spirits of children who are homeless than giving them an extra Christmas. Santa, snow, toys and lots of snacks and food go a long way in helping children forget, even for a little while that they are living in a shelter and not their own home. Foreclosures have forced so many families into shelters, it just breaks my heart.  I’m thankful to Subway for providing this happy time for our kids”

Schedule of Events:

•    Children playing in the Snow…………………………………………….11:00 a.m.
•    Santa Clause arrives at URM…………………………………………….11:15 a.m.
•    SUBWAY Caters Lunch to the Children…………………………………12:noon

For more information contact: Kitty Davis-Walker @ (213) 673-4585 or (213) 507-5562.

About Union Rescue Mission
Union Rescue Mission is a non-profit organization dedicated to serving the poor and homeless. Established in 1891, URM is one of the largest rescue missions of its kind in the United States and is the oldest in Los Angeles.  It provides a comprehensive array of emergency and long-term services, including food, shelter, clothing; medical and dental care; Christian recovery programs, transitional housing, legal assistance, education, counseling and job training to needy men, women, children and families. For more information, please visit our website urm.org

URM and Partners Help Needy Families in Texas

Union Rescue Mission, in partnership with Giving Children Hope and Lindale Assembly of God Church, delivers hurricane relief supplies to needy families in Houston, Texas.

Hurricane Ike hit Houston on September 13, 2008 causing major damage and leaving thousands of people in need of food and shelter. Lindale Assembly of God Church took up the challenge of providing food and shelter to hundreds of people each day after the storm hit the city. Under the leadership of their pastor and his wife, Randy and Jana Meeks, Lindale Assembly of God continues each week to help those people around them who seek their help, and the church plans to continue to help as long as the need exists.

The supplies delivered on April 30, 2009 to help with the hurricane relief efforts included: food, bottled water, toys, over-the-counter medicines, vaporizers, children’s vitamins, body lotions, soaps, disposable razors, and disposable diapers to name a few of the items.

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Lindale Assembly of God Church in Houston, Texas.

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Church gym where people slept following the hurricane.

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Randy and his son Harrison Meeks before unloading supplies in Houston.

Hospital Dumping Settlement – Press Conference at URM

On the rooftop of the Union Rescue Mission, Wednesday April 8th, 2009, Los Angeles City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo announced that a settlement agreement has been secured with College Hospital for the dumping of as many as 150 psychiatric patients in and around skid row over a two-year period.

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PRESS RELEASE FROM THE OFFICE OF THE CITY ATTORNEY ROCKARD J. DELGADILLO

L.A. City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo Secures Settlement with College Hospital Over Dumping of Psychiatric Patients on Skid Row

Groundbreaking Injunction Against Dumping of Psychiatric Patients

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His office has secured a settlement agreement with the hospital that will establish a groundbreaking injunction prohibiting College Hospital’s Costa Mesa and Cerritos facilities from dumping psychiatric patients in and around skid row, new protocols for the discharge of homeless patients with mental disorders, and $1.6 million in civil penalties and charitable contributions.

College Hospital has agreed to pay $1,200,000 in charitable contributions to a number of organizations that care for the mentally ill and the homeless, including Hathaway-Sycamores Child and Family Services, Men Chabad Residential Treatment Center, Lamp Community, the Midnight Mission, New Image Emergency Shelter, and the Union Rescue Mission.

“To think that medical institutions that are charged with caring for this extremely vulnerable population would then turn around and dump them in the streets is despicable. Today the City is saying think twice before you do it again.” ~Councilman Jose Huizar

See entire press release

L.A. Times article

O.C. Register article

Hearts and Souls for Homeless Families – Event Report Back

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The first annual Hearts and Souls for Homeless Families was held on Saturday April 4th at Soul Studios in Hollywood. World renown celebrity photographers Jack Guy, Bill Curry, Sheryl Nields, Jason Willheim, Scott Miller, Eric Raptosh, Gregg Segal, Jordan Nuttall, Lee Jeffries and Alfredo Falvo donated their work for a silent auction that raised much needed funds for the Union Rescue Mission.

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Hollywood celebrities Sean Brosnan, Christian Gibson, Catherine Mary Stewart and Michele Scarabelli joined URM CEO Andy Bales in honoring Steve Lopez–Los Angeles Times columnist and author of The Soloist. Mr. Lopez was awarded as Union Rescue Mission’s first ever Hero for Hope Honoree for his  long-standing support of URM. Through his influential journalism, Mr. Lopez played a vital role in the success of URM’s battle for Hope Gardens Family Center. His writing continues to significantly impact the community at large, raising awareness, compassion and change toward the homeless cause.

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During the event Mr. Lopez shared inspirational words, encouraging the crowd on hand to care for the less fortunate.

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A heartfelt thank you to major sponsors for the elegant, art-filled evening – Soul Studios, Chef Claud Beltran, Shell Bilyew, Variety, LA Confidential magazine, Samy’s Camera, Digital Fusion, Celestino Drago and Dolce Forno, Surfas and Miller Sherwood Printing.