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Lights, camera, action! Celebrities, luxurious lives, fame, wealth. These are probably some associations you make when you think of Hollywood, California. While this is all true, there is another side to the story of this “well-known” city. Envision yourself living in this grand urban center and not knowing where you will sleep at night. Picture yourself walking through the streets with an immense hunger. You pass by several eateries, but are not able to purchase food to nurture your body. You don’t know from where or when your next meal will be. You don’t have a home to call yours or clean clothes to keep you refreshed in these hot and humid California days. You’re frustrated at the circumstances that have placed you in this situation. You feel hopeless. Where can you go? Who can help you?

This is the reality of many Californians in Hollywood. Stories of suffering, struggle, racism, classism and poverty have been silenced by society so that this famous city can only be known as the “home of the entertainment industry.” Did you know that the Los Angeles county has the largest homeless population in the nation? Were you aware that a large number of these individuals in Hollywood are young people with ages ranging from 15 to 23? As Los Angeles is the focal point of the nation’s homelessness and also of human trafficking, the pornographic industries take advantage, especially of the youth, in these sensitive and vulnerable states.

This upcoming year, I will be serving as a Dweller / Young Adult Volunteer (YAV) in Hollywood to serve the homeless population. I will work in an agency or a ministry where I will engage in issues of economic injustice, mental health, domestic violence and human trafficking, which are all in this context connected to homelessness.

If you are willing and able, I ask for your financial support for this year of service that I am about to embark on. I will not be paid a salary or a wage for this work, but only a small monthly stipend to assimilate into the community I serve. Continue to visit this blog so that you can all experience this Hollywood journey and special year with me.

My goal is to raise $3000 for this program. You can provide support by donating to the PC USA website and by writing my name in the comment section here. However, if you would like to make a weekly, biweekly, monthly or quarterly contribution instead of a single donation, you can visit the DOOR website and set up your donation here.

This program emerges from DOOR’s (Discovering Opportunities for Outreach and Reflection) partnership with the Mennonite Mission Network and Young Adult Volunteer (YAV) program of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).

Thank you for your consideration and support.