Community Festival for Families Hit by the Economy

Over 11,000 Los Angeles area residents enjoyed a day on Saturday at Ted Watkins Park, participating in the 2011 Fresh Start Community Festival produced by SEIU United Long Term Care Workers (ULTCW). 

The purpose of the free daylong festival was to provide families who have been hard hit by the economy with the break they need and to ensure that their children have the supplies necessary as they head back to school.

Currently, in Los Angeles County alone, African Americans are facing 19% unemployment while Latinos are facing 14% unemployment, according to ULTCW.

[ Also Read: Will You Donate Your Suit to the Job Seekers? ]

“The economy has impacted the lives of millions of families throughout Los Angeles. From losing their jobs to losing their homes, this is a difficult time,” said Laphonza Butler, president of SEIU ULTCW. 

“The Fresh Start Festival is all about lending a hand to those in need and to let them know that we’re all in this together…no one is alone. Simply put, we could all use a Fresh Start.”

The Fresh Start Festival featured FREE back-to-school supplies and backpacks, haircuts and nail polishing for children 5-15 years of age, health screenings, lunch, and family entertainment including the music of Salsa band Son Mayor, Aaron Nigel Smith, POWER 106 DJ Loud, R&B band Tyghtship, and the Taiko Drummers. 

Festival attendees were also entertained by the DeLeon Circus, juggler Scot Nery, Rhythm Child, the Bob Baker Marionettes and more.

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Rakesh Raman