By Julia Arciga
For the Westside youth sports program Soccer Shots L.A., Thanksgiving generosity is coming early this year — and in a one-ton package.
The Playa del Rey-based organization wraps up its first annual Thanksgiving Food Drive on Saturday, an effort benefiting the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank.
The goal: one-ton of canned food — enough to feed 400 people a hearty meal — and financial donations for meat and fresh produce through the food bank’s website.
Soccer Shots has reached out to community charities in the past, including participation in the Westside Food Bank’s annual Hunger Walk and food collections at various Westside schools in October.
“We are hoping to make a significant impact,” said Alyssa McGarigal, Soccer Shots’ program and community advancement director. “We also hope to inspire our soccer players to do more for the Los Angeles community, both now and as they grow up.”
Soccer Shots teaches the game to kids three to eight years old.
In addition to this month’s food drive, coaches and staff will volunteer to assemble grocery packages for low-income seniors, families and children.
McGarigal said she hopes the food drive will become an annual event.
“We saw an opportunity for a project that can be a learning experience for the children and a chance to give back,” she said. “We also get to introduce the concepts of generosity, empathy, diversity and collaboration … and like the Soccer Shots program, the kids learn by doing.”§
Visit lafoodback.org to participate in the virtual food drive.
Taking a shot at hunger: Youth soccer program’s ambitious goal: Feed 400 hungry people
By Julia Arciga