Tag: skid row

Nov 6

Mayor Garcetti visits Skid Row Learning Center

School on Wheels students who attend our after-school learning center were treated to a surprise visit from Mayor Garcetti yesterday

Mayor Eric Garcetti visited School on Wheels’ Skid Row Learning Center (600 E 7th Street, Los Angeles) to find out more about the center.  The children knew that someone from the city was visiting and had prepared questions in advance but did not know that it was their mayor who would be the VIP visitor!

Questions from students to the mayor… How do we stop trash going into the ocean? Where do people that are on the street go when there is an earthquake?  What are sidewalks so [sic] rumboled? How can we stop graffiti? Why do people have guns? And why do people live on the streets?

When asked by a student “Why are shelters used instead of homes,” the mayor said,
“We want shelters to be a place where people go in an emergency, not where you grow up.”

Sadly for the students at School on Wheels, many are growing up in shelters. The mayor offered hope by saying that they were building extra housing and that homelessness was his priority, but he noted these things take time.

The mayor also talked to the children about libraries, parks, water and the 2028 Olympic games. He told the students that all sports for kids would be free in the city and that they could be the next Olympians.

After a tour of the center, the mayor was interviewed by local media and was then whisked away for his next appointment.

“The kids, staff and volunteers at the center were thrilled to have met the mayor, “ said Catherine Meek, Executive Director. “Our students are really smart and they kept him honest with the questions they asked him!”

View PDF Press Release

 

 

Feb 10

School on Wheels Works To Break Skid Row Cycle For Homeless Youth


Thank you to Pat Harvey and CBSLA for highlighting our work with homeless students in Skid Row.

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) – On any given night, there are roughly 47,000 homeless people in Los Angeles County, and many of them are children who simply want to be loved and to learn.

“We want the neighborhood to hear that there’s kids around, and we want the kids to feel safe, and to let them have a voice,” said Allison Maldonado, who runs the Skid Row Learning Center for School on Wheels.

School On Wheels works with homeless children to ensure that they don’t fall behind on their education, regardless their circumstances.

“Due to their current situation, they fail to see the connections between why it’s so important to stay in school and get that education,” Maldonado said. “They’re so focused on the now: ‘I need to eat tonight, where am I going to sleep tonight.’ They’re not as focused on learning for the test next week.”

The center helps as many as 45 students daily by providing a full meal and one-on-one time with a tutor. Most importantly, it provides a safe, quiet place for students to get their schoolwork done and stay caught up.

“Falling behind early has lifelong ramifications,” tutor Chris Chambers Goodman said. “So to the extent that we can at least help students try to keep up, we’re really doing a great service to the community.”

Once the kids finish their work, they get ready to make the walk back to the Union Rescue Mission, where many of them live.

“You do what you can in the time that you have them because you don’t know how long they’re going to stay,” Maldonado said.

While it’s only a quick three-block walk, it’s full of sights and sounds that can last a lifetime. But it’s also full of hope, something that’s not lost on the students or the people on the streets. As they walk, the children yell, “kids coming through!”

“It’s letting the kids yell and get all of their anger out,” said 8th grader Ashanti, who volunteers with School on Wheels. “And it’s also letting everybody on the streets know that they can stop what they’re doing before the kids get over there, and the kids can see them.”

Last year, School on Wheels worked with more than 2,200 volunteers and tutored nearly 3,500 students.

“As much as it’s hard to know that they are in this situation, the only thing we can do is remind them how to get out of it,” Maldonado said. “What they can do for themselves to grow and persevere and, most importantly, to break the cycle of homelessness.”

Nonprofit Works To Break Skid Row Cycle For Homeless Youth

Nov 30

There are 63,000 homeless youths in L.A. County. These are the children of skid row

(Click on the image above to view the video from LA Times)

“These are the children of skid row — black, white, Latino. They have pink and red Adidas sneakers or thumbs in their mouths or studs that glint like diamonds in their ears or the first hint of hair above their lips. They’re sisters and friends who profess their love for each other, who like listening to music when they study, who talk in class without raising their hands.

“They could be any kids.”

Read the entire article from LA Times…