On Wednesday a few of us from the Los Angeles office drove down interstate 10 to Downtown LA. We were ready to put on hair nets, aprons and roll up our sleeves in a commercial kitchen. Not an average day in our office routine, however when B Corp announced June as B the Change in your Community month, we couldn’t help but log in some much needed volunteering hours of our own. So we set out to Downtown Women’s Center to be sponsor their cooking club.
Let’s be honest about this cooking club; given our lack of professional culinary skills, it’s probably the only cooking club that would have accepted our team. Sure we all know how to chop veggies, but without the guidance of Danny, the kitchen leader, there was no way we could have ever figured out how to work the commercial oven. In the end everyone was patient and helpful and we were able to successfully prepare and serve a meal for 150 women who live in or around the Skid Row facility.
The Downtown Women’s Center (DWC) was founded in 1978 when social worker Jill Halvorson realized Skid Row relief agencies had plenty of services for homeless men, but so few for women. Currently, the facility houses many live-in residents, while hosting about 80 more daily visitors, where they come to rest, eat, take a shower, do laundry, or pick up their mail.
We had so much fun getting out of our comfort zone while helping out our local community. Between navigating a commercial kitchen for the very first time and learning how to man the dishwasher, we had the chance to bound with our fellow co-workers and have a few laughs in the process.
Many thanks to the welcoming staff at the Downtown Women’s Center! We can’t wait to come back and get cooking again.