The Los Angeles Clippers teamed up with Ralphs/Food 4 Less Monday, November 19th, to host their 19th annual Thanksgiving “Teamwork at the Table” event at the St. Joseph Center’s Bread and Roses CafÈ and the center’s main service site.
Starting the day at Bread and Roses CafÈ, members of the Clippers’ front office, including team president Andy Roeser, served homeless guests plates overflowing with turkey and fixings.
On hand was Hunter Howard, the 11-year-old son of Clippers vice president of marketing and broadcasting Christian Howard. Hunter Howard has been a committed volunteer at the event since the age of eight.
In the afternoon, Clippers head coach Mike Dunleavy and his assistant coaching staff, Jim Eyen, Kim Hughes, Rory White and Neal Meyer, distributed Thanksgiving turkeys, food baskets, clothing and books to more than 300 families at St. Joseph Center’s main service site at 400 Pico Blvd. in Santa Monica.
Clipper players Elton Brand, Brevin Knight, Shaun Livingston, Cuttino Mobley, Ruben Patterson, Josh Powell and Al Thornton were also in attendance at the service site.
The Clippers have brought “Teamwork at the Table” to St. Joseph Center since 1988. In 2004, Ralphs/Food 4 Less joined the team, and has since donated more than 1,300 turkeys.
The event is a special way for St. Joseph Center’s homeless and working-poor clients to get ready for the holidays, according to the center.
“The Clippers organization has been our biggest Thanksgiving partner for years — and Ralphs/Food 4 Less helps make sure that no St. Joseph Center family goes without a turkey on Thanksgiving,” St. Joseph Center executive director Rhonda Meister said.
Now in its 31st year of serving the Westside, St. Joseph Center is a non-profit social service agency that helps over 6,500 homeless and working poor individuals annually.
The center provides clients with basic necessities such as food and long-term service such as job training and childcare, to work toward becoming productive, stable and self-supporting members of the community.