Story and Photo By Omar Reyes/Staff Writer/@salar0895
While thousands of students at LBCC have a place to sleep at night, some attending are homeless and have little resources to help them.
To help homeless students, the Associate Student Body hosted a Homeless Student Outreach discussion and lunch in front of Building A at the LAC on Thursday, April 14.
“I thought the event was very welcoming and I got a lot of information on how homeless students are helped,” said Michelle Ledesma, 19, a kinesiology major. “It’s amazing how LBCC can help the homeless here.”
LBCC, and community organizations staffed tables and offered assistance and information on how they could help homeless students.
These agencies include Long Beach Transit, LBCC Library Preservation Project (which helps homeless students preserve important documents and photos) and MoveLA (which advocates public transportation systems for all for a low price).
The event was from noon to 1 p.m. Pizza and drinks were offered to students who visited the information booths.
Charline Vilchis, 25, a fashion design major, was present during the event and said, “I think it’s a great event. I have my own struggles, but couldn’t imagine anyone else having to go to school without having family support.”
Vilchis also said, “LBCC is doing a great job of addressing it because I have never seen this before, so I think it’s great that they’re reaching out to homeless students. The ASB is doing a great job of reaching out to the students.”
Elizabeth Palafox, 21, a political science major, is part of the ASB student cabinet and Representative of Legislative Affairs. Palafox said she and the ASB organized the event.
Palafox said that Director of Student Life Virginia Durivage and ASB cabinet adviser Camille Bolton were involved with organizing all of the organizations of the event and with all the logistics as well.
On what inspired her to organize an event to help homeless students, Palafox said, “I have a passion for helping homeless people because I grew up in a homeless community and my father was homeless, but I want to help homeless students here at LBCC.”
Palafox said the event’s goal was to give students the resources they need in a wide area, which include housing, transportation, and health insurance.
In addition, Palafox described the current status of LBCC helping homeless students as a stage “in its infancy,” but said with the event and more awareness being made on the campuses, she said she hopes student homelessness “will be better known.”