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Fred Jordan Mission's 2010 Giveaway Improves On Past Issues

By David Markland
Published: Thursday, October 14, 2010, at 05:36PM
DSC09996 David Markland [Flickr]

Tra, 1 years old, tries on a new pair of kicks donated by Foot Locker at the Fred Jordan Mission.

If looks were any indication, last Thursday's giveaway at the Fred Jordan Mission was a success both for the neighborhood and the children who participated. Nearly 4000 poor children received free shoes, clothing, haircuts, and burgers in an event that was described as "utter chaos" the previous year.

Wristbanding attendees and volunteer patrolled lines seemed to be the key to eliminating most of the problems that plagued the 2009 giveaway, which police then feared could have escalated into a riot.

According to Estela Lopez with the Central City East, this year's event "was outstanding in comparison to past years."

However, she said that while the LAPD was able to manage traffic and allow most deliveries make it to local businesses, customers and employees still had difficulty wading around road closures. She cited a lack of detour signage and inadequate prior notice for the problems.

"Several businesses expressed support for the event and the cause," she said, "but were critical of the City allowing it to occur on a weekday instead of a weekend when the business impact could be limited and children are not in school.

Over 400 volunteers participated in the event, including 75 managers from Foot Locker, some of whom came from as far away as San Diego and Bakersfield to give out shoes. More than 100 students and teachers from the Paul Mitchell School of Design also gave their time to give free haircuts.

Children who attended received burgers from In N Out, clothing, school and bathing supplies, and other donations provided by In-N-Out Burger; KIDS; Avery Dennison; Wal-Mart; Lucky Brand; Edgewood, Press; Barbara Walden; Shelter Partnership; Phillips, Lerner, Lauzon & Jamara, LLP; Xpress Supplies; Early, Maslach & Van Dueck; Allen Schwartz; Fargo Logistics, Kids Kaps With Love, Unilever and Reo Backpacks.


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