FLOC’s mid-Summer gathering took place at Hennessey’s Tavern in downtown Laguna Beach, 2009. Executive Director, Dawn Price, of the LB Friendship Shelter shared with FLOC members her passion for working with the homeless and the need to support shelters in south Orange County. Many FLOCers had no idea that hundreds of homeless sleep on the streets of south OC every single night. Members were inspired by Price’s talk and signed up to prepare two large carne asada dinners for the shelter in the weeks that followed.
“Nonprofits really struggle to engage the next generation of leaders, philanthropists and volunteers, and it’s wonderful that you are putting yourself out there as part of that group. I can tell you that not every person of your generation is doing this…and so becoming a leader is something that can really help you in a lot of ways and I promise you will get back much more than you put into it!” Dawn Price, Laguna Beach Friendship Shelter Executive Director
Friendship Shelter helps homeless adults achieve self-sufficiency and become more productive members of our community. Our 60-day self-sufficiency program in Laguna Beach, for which there is always a waiting list, provides a home, three meals daily and a wide range of support services for 32 men and women. Residents are expected to work, save money and develop skills to rebuild their lives. Graduates may apply to Henderson House Transitional Living apartments located in San Clemente, where 24 residents live for up to one year, allowing them to consolidate their gains and continue on the path to fully productive lives.
Friendship Shelter was founded as a direct response to a community need. Every major strategic decision since then has been rooted in an understanding of and compassion for the community. Going forward, we have a responsibility-as one of Laguna Beach’s oldest and most respected human services organizations-to continually improve our organization and its ability to respond to the community that has brought us so far, and to the homeless individuals who have inspired us in our endeavors. I am confident our best is yet to come.