Brandman in the Community

Holiday party leftovers help feed the homeless in L.A.

January 05, 2015 by Cindy O'Dell
Food is packaged up for donation to the Hippie Village in L.A.

Food is packaged up for donation to the Hippie Village in L.A.

Brandman University’s annual staff and faculty holiday lunch was over with food to spare, but when Kenneth Lewis, a guest at the party, heard it was going to be discarded, he quickly hunted down a way to donate the food to help feed the hungry and homeless on L.A.’s Skid Row.

Lewis, a junior at St. Bernard High School in Playa del Rey, was the guest of Dr. Michelle Rosensitto, director of Online Writing and Math Community (OWMC), and is the son of OWMC tutor Dr. Nicole Johnson.

“It shouldn’t go to waste. People are hungry and will appreciate this food,” he told Rosensitto when he heard two women asking Brandman employees to take plates of food because leftovers would be thrown away.

Kenneth Lewis and Dr. Michelle Rosensitto

Kenneth Lewis and Dr. Michelle Rosensitto

Lewis quickly called the Los Angeles Mission, but when there was no answer, he continued to search on his phone and found the Hippie Kitchen, part of the L.A. Catholic Worker Hospitality Kitchen. After a brief conversation with a worker named David about where the food came from, he got the address and made plans to deliver it.

“He has a big heart. I just want to help him,” said Rosensitto. Together they packed up enough food to feed 10-12 people, courtesy of Brandman University. Rosensitto noted that Lewis had a vision, took initiative, collaaborated with others and acted on his thoughts.

Lewis aspires to be a philantrhopist and is saving for a three-week trip to Costa RIca with Cross-Cultural Solutions, where he will participatewith other teens as they volunteer abroad this summer. He was recently awarded a $1,000 leadership scholarship at St. Bernard High School and will graduate in May 2016.

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