GLENDALE—Year after year, the spirit of giving comes alive during the holiday season and it did, once again, during the 2018 Thanksgiving holiday as the Armenian Relief Society of Western USA, Social Services was able to provide various forms of assistance to over 385 families in need in local communities through the donation of meals and more.
The support of companies, public officials, foundations, ARS chapters, churches, schools, and individual donors touched the lives of countless many this Thanksgiving. “We are humbled to have reached so many less-fortunate families and thank each and every one of our donors for helping us bring the comfort of Thanksgiving to so many homes,” said Talar Aintablian, Director of Operations.
Through the first initiative of its kind for ARS Social Services, the organization was selected as the Charity of Choice by Vons Store #1707 (561 N. Glendale Ave., Glendale, Calif.) and its Turkey Bucks program, which raised over $10,300 to provide full Thanksgiving meals to 174 local families in need (with meals feeding 6-8 per family).
The meals were arranged by the Vons team on the morning of November 20, 2018 and distributed the same day at the ARS Regional Headquarters. “It was totally our pleasure to assist in a small way. You and your folks do this 365 days a year. So, we give thanks to your organization in making our community a caring, compassionate, and friendly place to live,” stated Danny Almada, Store Director.
On November 19, 2018, 125 frozen turkeys were distributed at the ARS Regional Headquarters following what is now an annual tradition through the kindhearted sponsorship of Mr. & Mrs. Shahab and Nadia Shamsi.
Vahan & Anoush Chamlian Armenian School students visited the ARS Regional Headquarters on November 20, 2018 and donated Thanksgiving meals to an additional four families in need. Also on November 20th, 54 families received turkeys through St. Mary’s Armenian Apostolic Church in Glendale. The following day, on November 21st, St. Peter Armenian Church in Glendale participated in the effort with the delivery of Thanksgiving meals to 6 families. Full Thanksgiving meal donations were also received through the SLIG Charitable Foundation.
ARS Social Services participated in Congresswoman Judy Chu’s Annual Operation Gobble Turkey Donation Program on November 19, 2018 at the Rosemead Garvey Center where Congresswoman Chu donated turkeys to participating organizations, which would then distribute them to families in the Pasadena community.
On November 17, 2018, ARS Social Services was invited and participated in the 16th Annual Operation Gobble Gobble by City of Pasadena Mayor Terry Tornek in front of City Hall. 10 turkeys and food bags were received and distributed to clients through the ARS Social Services office.
Following the generosity of ARS chapters and schools, ARS Social Services has been distributing canned foods, dry goods, and gift cards through its offices with charitable donations received from individuals, Rose & Alex Pilibos Armenian School, ARS San Fernando Valley “Anahid” Chapter, ARS Burbank “Araz” Chapter, ARS S. Orange County “Karni” Chapter, ARS Montebello “Nairy” Chapter, ARS Orange County “Sevan” Chapter, ARS La Crescenta “Talin” Chapter.
ARS Social Services is committed to providing comprehensive social services to low-moderate individuals and families through four offices located in Glendale, Pasadena, Hollywood, and North Hollywood. Services include case management, completion of forms, assistance with housing and transportation issues, senior services, employment services, referrals, English as a Second Language/Life Skills classes, and more. ARS Social Services can be reached at (818) 241-7533 or [email protected]