Greetings! Welcome to our fifth dispatch, another installment of LA-based mutual aid and grassroots efforts for you to explore, support, and join. As we witness the city’s horrifying displacement of our unhoused neighbors through the so-called “CARE+” sweeps, the overmilitarization of LAPD and LASD, and the at-times overwhelming heat of summer upon us, we are also witnessing many people working so hard to fight back and care for our communities.
After a period of rebuilding Mutual Aid LA with long-term sustainability as a top priority, we’re ready to welcome people (back) into the fold for both in-person and remote forms of engagement. Here, we’ve got several opportunities ready and waiting. There’s always room for more at Produce in the Park , our free food distribution program in collaboration with the LA Community Fridges (Thursdays 11:30AM-1:15PM @ St. James Park near USC). Sign up and be sure to check out our new merch for purch!
Do you see yourself as the tapped-in type? Or do you aspire to be a tad more tuned-in to all the resources and efforts in L.A.? Great! Consider joining the Dispatch team! Yes, this here thing you’re reading right now. We could really, really use your help. Or, devote some time and skills to helping us build a countywide resource and group directory for everyone to utilize. Please reach out if you want to learn more about any of these opportunities!
We hope this dispatch provides you with the info and inspiration you need to get or stay involved in a way that works for you. It’s easy to get bogged down and feel hopeless in response to what’s going on in the world, but we promise you that you will not regret throwing yourself into an effort for the people. We are stronger when we move in solidarity and more hands make less work. That’s how we sustain this.
If you would like a group or event you’re a part of to be listed in the next dispatch, we’d love to hear all about it via this form. Don’t forget to resubmit to be included again. There’s no limit.
Solidarity and Snacks (SASS) (https://linktr.ee/solidaritysnax) started with a small group of people handing out food, water and sunscreen to the many protesters who took to the streets of Los Angeles for racial justice during the summer of 2020. For a considerably long stretch of time, there were actions happening daily and you could count on spotting SASS pushing and pulling their camera-carts-turned-supply-wagons through crowds and up and down hills. Why camera carts? More than half of the people that make up SASS are members of IATSE, the entertainment industry’s labor union. Witnessing folks from this group take the skills, stamina, discipline and ability to work as a team–things you gain from long hours and unreliable conditions of a film set–and apply them to a movement, is a true and steady source of hope and motivation.
The fact that SASS, almost 2 years later, is still out there every week with a camera cart of concessions to sustain protestors at BLM’s End Police Associations Rally, is a good reminder that everybody can use what they have to fight our current disaster of a system and work to build something totally new rooted in care.
Only a few months after forming, SASS expanded their efforts to get food, water and supplies out to the unhoused communities they began to know, mostly in Skid Row. This became a weekly, reliable distribution at 6th and San Pedro and at El Pueblo near Union Station. While city leaders ordered countless sweeps where city sanitation workers and cops would violently destroy homes, possessions and supplies of unhoused communities, SASS would be there to listen and support those who had experienced the sweep.
And what support looks like is always shifting. This is because survival as a houseless individual is always shifting due to being completely vulnerable to everything and anything from severe temperatures to polluted air to unprovoked violence by cops to deterioration of mental health from trauma to hostile architecture and a removal of public facilities and resources. Since their start, SASS has raised funds for a number of things like hot coffee and meals, PPE, hygiene items, warm clothing, solar phone chargers, blankets, tents, reusable toilets, tarps and water.
This group has figured out how to make a donated dollar stretch with wholesale and bulk orders and item donations from friends and networks. They’ve distributed tax credit and return kits and offered Know Your Rights information around ordinance 41.18. SASS refuses to be stagnant. Instead, they’ve become an ever-evolving true mutual-aid practicing community. Now, the Skid Row distribution is organized and run by housed and houseless participants alike. Which was their goal all along.
Just a couple minutes browsing the posts on the @solidarityandsnacks IG provides a record of this city’s relentless attacks on houseless folks and the formation and resilience of a community in response. We have the opportunity to be a part of sustaining this radical care.
*PLEASE clean, sort & fold all items you are donating. Items should be new or gently used. Socks, underwear and hygiene items should always be unused.
WHO: The People of South Gate
WHAT: TIME MONEY
In partnership with Huerte del Valle, our collective is aiming to distribute boxes of organic fruits and vegetables to residents facing food insecurity in South Gate and the surrounding SELA communities on a bi-monthly basis. This is our Cajas de Cariño initiative and it means our fundraising is ongoing and volunteers will be needed, especially on distribution days to deliver boxes or load boxes into cars. If you feel compelled to join us in helping our comunidad, DM us!
WHERE: Our collective is based in South Gate but our program is open to anyone in surrounding communities such as Watts, Lynwood, Huntington Park, Cudahy, Maywood, Bell, and Bell Gardens.
$$$: Donations always accepted via Venmo: @thepeopleofsg / Cashapp: $thepeopleofsg. Our goal for each round of distribution is $300.
WHO: Leg Up Los Angeles
WHAT: TIME ITEMS MONEY
Uplifting underprivileged and houseless people in Los Angeles. Events can be found on our Instagram! Items needed are food, water, sanitary products & clothes, all of which can be delivered to 4576 Alumni Avenue, Los Angeles, 90041. WHEN: Schedule a time to deliver items by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or DM on IG.
WHERE: Eagle Rock, Highland Park, Glassell Park, Echo Park, Lincoln Heights
$$$: Venmo: @legup-la
WHO: Echo Park Trash Club
We are a grassroots community based group that collects trash overflow in our neighborhood and considerately works with our unhoused neighbors as well as our housed neighbors in this important process to work on keeping our streets safe and clean for everyone. Every other Sunday from 10am-12pm we do clean ups around EP & Silver Lake (find out thru our Instagram, Nextdoor group or via our newsletter - which you can sign up for via the link tree in our IG bio)
WHEN: Every other Sunday from 10am-12pm
WHERE: Around Echo Park and Silver Lake
WHO: Feed the Block IE
WHAT: ITEMS MONEY
Feed The Block IE (Inland Empire) is a Black and femme led mutual aid organization that provides needed resources to our most marginalized community members, including houseless, low income Black and Brown folks, in the path towards liberation. Collecting gently used/washed men’s clothing/shoes, dog food, backpacks, blankets. We will be accepting item donations at our next event (TBA). Please DM on IG or email us (email@example.com) to coordinate a drop-off or pickup time!
WHEN: Next event TBA, coordinate a time to handoff donations
WHERE: West Inland Empire, Ontario specifically
$$$: Venmo: @FeedTheBlockOnta / Cashapp: $FeedTheBlockOnta (Please only use emojis when donating and do not select “for goods or services”)
WHO: More Hope Project
WHAT: TIME ITEMS MONEY
We are an autonomous mutual aid group based out of San Bernardino. We provide education and meet immediate needs through physical and monetary donations. We have bi-weekly events as well as sporadic mutual aid malls where volunteer work is necessary. Anyone interested should reach out to us directly via email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or DM on IG. We accept clothes (new undergarments & socks, new & gently used jackets, pants, & shoes), blankets, and hygiene items (soap, toothpaste, shampoo). For pick-up (local only) or drop-off, please reach out to us directly.
WHEN: bi-weekly meetings & events, contact for more info
WHERE: San Bernardino/Inland Empire
$$$: We accept funds via paypal (email@example.com) / cashapp: $morehopeproject
WHO: No Us Without You LA
WHAT: TIME MONEY
Non-profit by Va’La Hospitality providing food security for our undocumented community during the Covid-19 pandemic and beyond. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on how to become a volunteer.
WHEN: bi-weekly in-field food distribution and deliveries
WHERE: Los Angeles County (Based in Boyle Heights)
$$$: Donate via our website, $33 Feeds a Family of 4 for 1 Week!
WHO: Midnight Books: Whittier Fridge & Food Distro
WHAT: TIME ITEMS
We have a community fridge at our location as well as Sunday hot meal distribution with Food Not Bombs Southeast LA. Every other Sunday (next is THIS WEEKEND on May 8th) we distribute hot meals to various encampments in the area along with food not bombs. We meet at the store then set out. Hit us up on Instagram if interested. We are collecting items for the fridge and pantry! All unopened food items as well as essentials such as hygiene products (soap, masks, etc).
WHEN: Every other Sunday (next is May 8) @ 12:30pm. Fridge hours: WED-FRI 2-7PM / SAT 11AM-7PM / SUN 11AM-5PM
WHERE: 7201 Greenleaf Avenue, Suite D, Whittier, CA, 90602. Serving Whittier, Santa Fe Springs, Norwalk.
WHO: Proper Hygiene Project DTLA
WHAT: TIME ITEMS MONEY
Proper Hygiene Project DTLA provides our unhoused neighbors with basic hygiene supplies to not only build community but normalize wealth/resource distribution. We collaborate with other mutual aid organizations to better serve our unhoused neighbors. We believe having proper hygiene is a way to tackle the stigma of living outdoors.
ITEMS accepted are: Antibacterial Soap, Wash Cloths, Tooth Paste/Brushes, Anti Itch Ointment. Baby Wipes, Tampons, Pads, Underwear, Sox. DM us (@ProperHygieneProject_DTLA) to coordinate a handoff of donations. Also DM us for suggestions on where to find the supplies we use. We don’t mind sharing our resources.
WHEN: Distributions are sporadic, so please DM us (@ProperHygieneProject_DTLA) to be added to our volunteer list or to get more information.
WHERE: Skid Row, DTLA City Hall
$$$: Donations accepted for purchasing hygiene items. Venmo: @properhygieneproject_dtla CashApp: $properhygieneproject
WHO: West Valley Mutual Aid and West Valley Homes Yes
West Valley Homes Yes and West Valley Mutual Aid are supporting ongoing food pantry pop-ups being hosted by SOVA. We need volunteers M-F in the West SFV. Pitch in for food justice by helping rescue and sort diverted food waste. Sign up for our grocery rescue in Van Nuys Mondays thru Thursdays.
WVHY is hosting a pop-up food pantry 1st and 3rd Wednesday of the month at Valley Church. Every Friday, you can volunteer at the food pantry at the NEW Economics for Women Family Source Center. Email email@example.com for more information on volunteering.
WHEN: Various weekdays (see above)
WHERE: West San Fernando Valley
WHO: UCLA 4 All
WHAT: ITEMS MONEY
We are a volunteer-based homelessness advocacy mutual aid group, run by both UCLA students and alumni, conducting direct outreach to keep our community more informed, fed, and intentional. Accepting ITEM donations of: Water bottles, Food Items (soft, healthy, warm foods preferred), tarps for rainy days, socks, underwear, wipes, wet wipes, dental hygiene items, menstrual products (tampons, pads), hand sanitizer, sleeping bags, portable solar chargers, Gatorade. Email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or DM on IG to coordinate a donation drop-off.
WHERE: Westwood, Venice
$$$: Venmo: @ucla4all
WHO: LACF Fridge Moving Team
WHAT: TIME MONEY
Our LACF Community Fridge Dispatch & Moving Team makes maneuvering hunks of metal look easy. Between our dispatch coordinator, fridge source-ers, a small but mighty fleet of trucks and the helping hands (folks willing to help lift fridges) across LA, this team has played an integral part in helping the Los Angeles Community Fridge network stay healthy and growing. WANT TO JOIN THE TEAM? Great! Everybody is welcome whether you have a truck, have maintenance experience or have a little extra energy to help lift a fridge with several others every once in awhile. Head to the link in our bio and introduce yourself in the fridge movers signal!
WHEN: TBD but flexible
WHERE: All over L.A. Moves are within a reasonable distance from YOU!
$$$: High gas prices means we’re raising funds to reimburse our fridge movers who’ve been racking up miles with fridge pick-ups and deliveries! Venmo: @Sarah-Ginsburg w/ an ice cube emoji.
WHO: South Hill Community Fridge
WHAT: TIME ITEMS
This is an especially active community fridge right across the 110 from USC at South Hill & W 28th. Volunteers are needed each week for South Hill Sundays. Sign up to pick-up & deliver meals to the fridge by car or sign up to distribute those meals and supplies by wagon to the unhoused encampments in the neighborhood (for the social and fun-loving folks). More folks and fund$ are needed to support the Vax events held at the fridge the last Thursday of each month, 9:30am-noon. Funds provide donuts, coffee and Cinnamon Toast Crunch alongside a pop-up vaccination clinic. The fridge is always accepting unopened food, hygiene items, books and everything on this list. Or consider signing up to clean the fridge or remove boxes from bulk food donations once-a-week. Find out what Los Angeles Community Fridge is near your home and help keep it running!
WHEN: Every Sunday from 12-3pm WHERE: The South Hill Fridge (just across the 110 from USC at South Hill & W 28th)
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