7 Ways You Can Help People Experiencing Homelessness During the Holiday Season
It’s officially the holiday season, and for many of us, it’s usually a joyful time to get together with friends and family (this year virtually!). But it’s also good time to reflect on the things that some of us can take for granted, especially during a pandemic, like having a home.
For people experiencing homelessness or having trouble making ends meet, a token of kindness and support can brighten up the holiday. People often reach out to the City during the holiday season to see how they can help. We asked our Homeless Services team, who are based out of the Multi-Service Center (MSC), about ways to help.
Here’s what they suggested.
- Create a hygiene kit or house warming gift kit from this Amazon Hygiene Kit List or this Amazon Housing Assistance list to easily shop from! Call the Multi-Service Center at (562-570-4586) to set up a time to drop off.
- Donate gift cards to places like Target, Walmart and grocery stores and drop off at the Multi-Service Center. Please call David Thompson, MSC Coordinator at 562-570-4586 to coordinate drop off.
- When the weather outside is frightful, you can make a difference to those experiencing homelessness. Drop off S, M, L, XL or XXL sweat pants, shirts, socks and men’s and women’s underwear, beanies, scarves, caps, hoodies, towels or blankets. Here's an Amazon Clothing Wishlist. We take gently used items too!
- Host a virtual welcome home kit holiday party with youth. Young people can make a welcome home kit with these items and include a special hand-written motivating message to go in the kit. It’s a meaningful way to get youth involved in helping the community. Please call David Thompson, MSC Coordinator at 562-570-4586 to coordinate drop off.
- Donate food items like, canned food, individualized drinks (i.e., juices, water), snacks (i.e., granola bars, power bars), instant oatmeal, instant soup, fruit and vegetables.
- Donate to the Mayor’s Fund to End Homelessness. Your tax-deductible donation supports homeless services in Long Beach by providing access to transportation services, medical care, mental health services, substance treatment and more.
- Spread the word about our services. If you know of someone or a family experiencing homelessness, tell them there is help. Call (562) 570-4500 or our 24-Hour Public Health Advisory Line (562) 570-4499.