LA nonprofit surprises under-resourced, homeless elementary students with holiday experience

Eric Resendiz Image
Monday, December 19, 2022
LA nonprofit surprises under-resourced students with holiday cheer
A Los Angeles-based nonprofit surprised a group of students from an under-resourced community with a holiday experience.

WEST ADAMS, LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- It was a surprise that put smiles on the faces of little ones from Emerson Elementary in Compton. On Thursday, about 70 students, ranging from kindergarten to second grade, were invited to a Los Angeles-based nonprofit for a holiday experience. The students are from under-resourced communities and some of them are in foster care or are experiencing homelessness.

"I am happy and I have never did it before," said Michaelangelo Rolon, a student at Emerson Elementary School.

"This is something new for our students. our students deserve this just like every other student," said Lakisha Moore, principal at Emerson Elementary. "Just seeing our students happy, elated, appreciative, I am just overwhelmed."

LA84 Foundation is a nonprofit in the West Adams area that hosted the children. The foundation focuses on helping kids have access to youth sports programs to enrich their lives.

"It is such a small thing ... to be able to bring this joy to kids and the connections to academics, the connections to family, the connections to friends. It's a great day here at LA84 Foundation," said Renata Simril, president and CEO of LA84 Foundation.

The kids took pictures with Santa Claus, and decorated picture frames and sugar cookies. They were also fed a warm meal with holiday fixings, played games, and sang Christmas carols. It was all made possible thanks to different groups across the community.

Along with all of the holiday fun the kids had, they also left home with a toy from the ABC7 Spark of Love Toy Drive.

"This may be the only present they receive (during the holidays), some of them, not all. I think it's just the experience. For a lot of my students, it's beyond the toys, it's the experience of getting together," Moore said.

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