Subway, Santa & Snow

Tomorrow, 20 tons of snow will fall in Downtown LA! Subway restaurants are sponsoring our 8th Annual Christmas in July celebration.

Nearly 200 kids will enjoy snow ball fights, carnival games, face painting, cotton candy, gifts from Santa and more! Subway is also providing lunch for everyone.

Union Rescue Mission CEO, Rev. Andy Bales said “I don’t know what I look forward to the most, the 20 tons of snow or the smiles on the children’s faces. Santa, snow, toys, 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. I am thankful to SUBWAY for providing this great time for our kids”.

Festivities will get underway promptly at 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, July 13, 2011 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).

For media inquiries, please contact Kitty Davis-Walker at (213) 673-4585 or (213) 507-5562, email:

Mike Sullivan Performs For URM Guests

Yesterday, our guests got to enjoy some live music during their lunch! Mike Sullivan, a singer/songwriter who plays the harmonica and the guitar, came in to bless people at the Union Rescue Mission with his musical talents. Mike has performed at over 200 colleges on a nationwide tour, opend for Taylor Dane, a multi-platinum artist, and enjoys giving back by performing at places such as children’s hospitals, and now URM!

Thanks so much to Mike Sullivan for performing some beautiful music and brightening our lunch! You can learn more about Mike on his website,

Church Blesses Guests With Beauty Day

Women and men guests of Union Rescue Mission were treated Monday afternoon with a Grooming and Beauty Day. The event was hosted by The Church of Love and Unity Christan Fellowship in the guest chapels. Stations were set up for men’s haircuts, women’s hair styling, makeup, facials, and manicures. Thirty men and thirty women took part in this Day of Beauty Make Over’s spa, in the spirit of this Mothers Day coming up this Sunday!

Volunteers prayed with the women as they finished up their makeovers and sent them off with a smile on their face.

Thank you to the Church of Love & Unity for gifting our mothers and guest men with this service for the third year!

Ross Surprises Kids with Easter Baskets

Yesterday, Ross Stores District 22 came to URM to hand out handmade Easter Baskets! Over 50 kids at Union Rescue Mission were excited – and surprised! – to receive these baskets full of toys and candy.

Children lined up outside our Teen Room and were able to meet Ross employees and pick out their own Easter Basket.

Due to Ross’ generosity, there were enough to also bless 60 kids at our Hope Gardens Family Center, as well! Thank you so much to everyone who made this special Easter surprise happen!

Resonate Church Spends Week With URM

This past week, Union Rescue Mission welcomed a group of 19 college students to the mission. Resonate Church, from Pullman, Washington and Moscow, Idaho, has for the past few years offered a Spring Break missions trip to Los Angeles, bringing them to URM.

Staying in tents on the roof, this group devoted themselves to serving the mission in any way they could. The students worked daily, serving breakfast and lunch in the kitchen, beginning at 6 a.m. They also helped in our recent renovation of the roof, putting together new lawn furniture.


During their breaks, the group volunteered their time in the Women’s Day Room. Laura Slatemaker proposed the idea of offering manicures to the women. The women loved it, lining up excitedly for their chance to receive a manicure. These students were able to serve the women for two afternoons and gave every woman have a chance to get their nails done.


Thank you to Chad McMillan and Rachel Tweet and their group for all their work and joy they brought to the women and kitchen of URM last week.

Glendale Shelter Stories: Meet Jazmine and Aundria

Sisters Jazmine and Aundria are two returning volunteers of the Glendale winter shelter. They first heard about the winter shelter efforts though their local church and came the next day to offer their help. Having gone through tough situations of their own, they both know what it feels like to need help. This connection with the guests gives the sisters a reason to keep coming back and doing as much as they can for the shelter.

“I like to help people and this is the perfect place to help people out a lot,” says Jazmine. In addition to preparing and serving dinner, they gathered unused clothes from home and donated them to the guests. The donated clothes, as they pointed out, can now be seen being worn by guests all around the room.

Over the past months they have connected with the guests and become close with many. “When they see us come in to serve, they all get really happy,” said Aundria.

Check back tomorrow to hear of another story from the Glendale winter shelter. If you are interested in being a volunteer, like Jazmine and Aundria, click here for more information.

Faith Community Women’s Group Hosts Kids Party

The Women’s Group of Faith Community in Covina hosted a wonderful Kids Party on Saturday for all the children, and their families, at URM!

The gym was transformed into a fun zone, with games, music, free-throw contests, photo booths, hoola hooping, face painting and more! The kids had a blast, and didn’t want it to end. The ladies of Faith Community generously supplied everyone with pizzas for lunch, which was a great ending to a great morning of fun.

Thanks to Faith Community and everyone who made this escape from life on Skid Row possible for our kids!

Help Portrait Comes to URM

For many people experiencing homelessness, taking a family portrait each Christmas, or having a professional take a photo of themselves is a luxury they can’t afford.  But thanks to Help Portrait, an organization that brings professional photographers together to use their photography skills to give back to their local community, this luxury was made feasible and hundreds of people were able to receive beautiful portraits.

On Saturday, December 4th, Union Rescue Mission was one of several locations that photographers gathered to bless the people of Skid Row by taking beautiful photos, and printing them on the spot for free!

There were several backdrops to choose from, including a large Christmas tree with presents under it. A “Kids Station” was set up with crafts and coloring. All in all, it was a great day that brought joy to many people.

Take a look at the Channel 11 News clip below to see some of people that were touched by this fun and generous event!

Daily Grill Honors Veterans at URM

Last Thursday, the Daily Grill came out to sponsor and serve a wonderful Veterans Day lunch once again!

Lunch began with Garfield High School ROTC presenting the flag, and leading us in the Pledge of Allegiance.

URM guests enjoyed a tasty meal of meatloaf, carrots, potatoes, and apple cobbler! Veterans were honored at a special table and served by representatives from the Daily Grill as a thank you for their service to our country.