TCHS Rampage

Temple City High School


December 15, 2016

Pang and Wang cook and give to the hungry


For many holiday seasons, Sophomore Josephine Wang has been giving back to her community by volunteering with the Union Rescue Mission. She travels to Skid Row in downtown Los Angeles once a month to help serve 600 to 800 homeless people a proper meal.

Wang’s church organizes groups of volunteers, including her, to cut and prepare food as well as distribute it. The intention of the trips is not only to help the disadvantaged residents of Los Angeles, but to bring attention to their lives and show there is more work to be done.

“Having the chance to put yourself into other people’s shoes is an eye-opening experience,” Wang said. “It makes me feel humbled and even honored to help in the kitchen and serve those who are less fortunate.”

Wang says that her work with URM persuaded her to continue to volunteer outside of high school, as well as encourage others to do the same. URM’s offerings are not limited to serving meals. They also include social interactions with the residents in recreational activities and tutoring and babysitting opportunities. Though Wang dedicates a significant amount of time to this work, she and the organization know that any amount of time spent assisting the disadvantaged is valuable.

One-time volunteers can have an experience just as meaningful as frequent visitors like Wang. Freshman Tricia Pang, for example, spent Thanksgiving break volunteering with an organization called Gleanings for the Hungry, which sends millions of servings of food overseas to places such as the Philippines and Guatemala.

She and 40 other volunteers packaged dried fruits and vegetables before loading them into shipping containers. The scale of the operation impressed Pang, but the other volunteers interested her even more.

“I witnessed kindness in people that you don’t see that often anymore,” Pang said. “Farmers were donating their crops, and people were flying down from Canada and all around the world just to help in whatever ways they could.”

The volunteers in both organizations are essential to their production, and greater numbers create greater outreach. Gleanings for the Hungry has grown from producing 10,000 meals a year to millions, and URM now feeds 2,300 people each day. By giving their time, volunteers are able to make much more of a difference than simply giving gifts this holiday season.

If you are interested in becoming a volunteer, the URM and Gleanings for the Hungry offer simple steps to becoming volunteers for their organizations.

If you are interested in helping the Union Rescue Mission, sign up through the URM website to interact with kids, serve meals or tutor residents at their main center in Skid Row or at the Hope Gardens Family Center, or volunteer to sort clothes at the URM thrift store in Covina.

For those who wish to help Gleanings for the Hungry, come to package soup mix or dried fruit depending on the time of year, or do maintenance of food pallets, equipment or buckets. Money and crop donations are also accepted.


About the Author

Kaiya Pomeroy-Tso
Kaiya Pomeroy-Tso is a TCHS junior and second year staff writer for Rampage. She writes articles, takes pictures, and does illustrations for the publication! She also edits and designs a monthly newsletter for Longden Elementary.



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