December 2021 Issue
As we close out 2021 and look forward to the new year, I’d like to take a moment to thank all our donors and supporters for your continued generosity and support. Because of you, we are able to work towards our mission of creating positive change for people and places.
Looking back at the past year, we faced many challenges, but celebrated achievements as well. When times were tough, we were able to lean on our network of friends and supporters to help push us through challenges, and for that we are extremely grateful. Together, we reached major milestones in our real estate projects and created new programs to support our community. We will carry that momentum into the new year, as we look forward to putting the worst of the pandemic behind us, and keep our focus on finding more solutions to create positive change.
Once again, thank you to our donors, volunteers, supporters and employees, for your dedication to LTSC and making a difference in our community. I hope you all enjoy a safe and wonderful holiday, and I look forward to seeing you (in person!) in 2022.
Building Affordable Housing
Assisting People in Need
Strengthening Little Tokyo
As one of LTSC’s three original staff members, Evelyn helped shape the organization’s spirit.
Evelyn Yoshimura joined Little Tokyo Service Center (LTSC) on October 15, 1980 as one of the organization’s three original staff members. Her retirement comes after almost 40 years at LTSC and decades of work in the Little Tokyo community. As LTSC’s Director of Community Organizing, Evelyn’s social activism and grassroots organizing helped steer LTSC’s mission and values over the years. Her wisdom, moral compass and moxie will be sorely missed–but her vision and legacy continues on in LTSC’s work.
Click the button below to read Evelyn’s full retirement piece!
“I first met Evelyn Yoshimura in the mid-1970's when I got involved with the Little Tokyo People's Rights Organization that was organizing residents and stakeholders to fight evictions of low income residents and small businesses back then. Evelyn was a ``veteran`` activist and I was a young kid who didn't know much. But she took the time to take me under her wing and helped me understand the history and significance of Little Tokyo. As a child, my family would come to Little Tokyo for festivals and shopping–but Evelyn's wisdom and experience built a deeper connection and commitment to preserving and fighting for Little Tokyo in me - something that has stuck all these years. While I was off to college up north, Evelyn worked very closely with my parents - Bert and Lillian Nakano - throughout the redress and reparations movement. She was a great friend and source of support to them. And so when I was able to start working at Little Tokyo Service Center, and was able to work with Evelyn again, it was like a homecoming. She is one of our unsung heroes, and while she may not be as widely recognized through awards, by public officials and in the media as she deserves–if you talk to generations of people involved in the community, she is deeply respected and loved.”
“Evelyn was my 'go to' person, my 'sounding board' who would jump in when things had to be done quickly. She played important roles in struggles like the Rafu Shimpo Workers Support Committee, NCRR and redress, anti-apartheid and the Free South Africa Movement to name a few. She was the person I checked in with about responding to the attacks on Muslims and Arab Americans after 9/11 which guided NCRR leadership to plan the vigil in Little Tokyo.”
“Evelyn brought thoughtful, level headed perspective to difficult conversations while clearly advocating for ideas and principles she believed in. She worked with people as one of them, not as someone who stood apart from ordinary folks. That was her strength. Her contributions can be measured by the number of hearts and minds she touched, from the elders living in Casa Heiwa and Little Tokyo Towers, to the family-owned businesses, to the young people from various campuses that sought her guidance.”
LTSC Hosts Booster Shot Clinic to Protect Little Tokyo Seniors and Essential Workers
Partnering with Wesley Health Centers and funded by Keiro, LTSC hosted a COVID-19 booster clinic at Terasaki Budokan last month, administering 137 doses to essential workers and seniors in Little Tokyo. The clinic was conveniently located within walking distance for both seniors and essential workers, with language support available in multiple languages, making the booster clinic accessible to all. With the new variant and case numbers rising again, we urge our readers to stay safe this holiday season!
After 30 Successful Years, A3M Program Closes
2021 marks a pivotal year at A3M, as we celebrated 30 years of life-saving work on November 19th. We are sad to announce that we are also preparing for the closure of A3M at the end of this year. In an effort to centralize all marrow donor registration activities, the Be the Match Registry will not be continuing their partnership with recruitment centers such as A3M, with the intention that their recruitment work will continue through the Be the Match organization. To address the need of finding marrow donors for patients of Asian and Pacific Islander (API) ancestry, Be the Match is in the process of creating an API program which will be spearheaded by Susan Choi, A3M Executive Director.
Over the last 30 years, A3M is very proud to have added more than 330,000 donors to the marrow registry, creating more than 9,000 marrow and stem cell matches. These life-saving matches were possible because of the generosity and passion of supporters like you. As A3M closes its doors, we’re left brimming with gratitude and pride for all the miracles we created together. The A3M team would like to extend a huge thank you to all of their patients and our supporters.
For a look back at A3M’s 30 years of life-saving work, watch our 30th anniversary video here:
LTSC Spreads Holiday Cheer to Residents with Navidad en El Barrio
LTSC hosted its annual holiday event for our residents and Angelina Preschool families. As a Navidad en el Barrio distribution site, LTSC distributed 120 food baskets filled with pantry items, fresh produce and poultry. We also spread holiday joy with toys for the kids and blankets and socks for the families. Thank you to Baby2Baby and the APA Toy Drive for your generous donations!
We’d also like to extend our gratitude to our volunteer groups: students from Brio College Prep, the Canadian Consulate General’s Office, US Bank and LTSC volunteers. Yocelinne, a student from Brio College Prep, explained, “I chose to do my high school volunteer hours here [at Angelina Preschool] because it looked fun and I wanted to help families in need. I want to volunteer at LTSC more because it feels good!”
If you are interested in volunteering with us at a future event, please check our VolunteerMatch page by clicking the button below!
Changing Tides Host their 3rd Annual Gala
Changing Tides’ third annual gala was on November 28th, 2021 at a beautiful ocean-side estate in Palos Verdes. This year’s event theme was “Gratitude“. Guests and generous sponsors enabled Changing Tides to raise much-needed funds to expand therapy stipends for youth and young adults and to support ongoing outreach activities to reduce the stigma around mental health. Speakers included friends and supporters of Changing Tides, and Dr. Timothy Fong, Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. We are so grateful to our supporters, our event host, guest speakers and volunteers for making the event an overwhelming success!
YOU can help seniors thrive into the new year! With booster shots on the way and the pandemic lingering on, we still need your help.
Donate now to make a difference for our seniors and the Little Tokyo community.
“LTSC does vital work in the community, providing resources to people in need–like affordable housing, mental health services, and aid to small businesses. Especially with this past year’s spike in anti-Asian hate, it is important to support organizations like LTSC who empower and uplift the Asian American community. If you have the means, I would encourage you to volunteer or make a donation to LTSC. Whether you’re part of the Asian American community or not, your support will help strengthen communities of color in LA!” -Olivia, LTSC Donor
COVID-19 Booster Vaccines
Anyone age 16 and older in LA County is eligible for a booster dose.
This November, LTSC distributed 70 turkeys and food baskets to families in our buildings. Thank you to the offices of Councilmember Kevin De Leon, Assemblymember Miguel Santiago and Councilmember Gil Cedillo for their generous donations!
LTSC would like to extend a warm thank you to Baby2Baby and the APA Toy Drive for helping us make the holidays bright!! With toy donations from these two organizations, LTSC was able to distribute toys to our residents and students of Angelina Preschool.
Thank You Ares Management
Thank you to the AAPI Employee Resource Group at Ares Management for spreading holiday cheer! They provided and distributed 54 meals, purchased from a local small business, to low income seniors in Little Tokyo last week. The seniors were extremely grateful to receive the wonderful meals. Thank you!
Daimaru is now leasing rooms! Located on First St. in the heart of Little Tokyo, across the street from the Japanese Village Plaza, Daimaru is walking distance from restaurants, nightlife, public transportation and more. For more information, click here to visit the Daimaru website!
Go Little Tokyo for the Holidays
Still looking for some last minute gifts? Shop small and support Little Tokyo small businesses! If you’re looking for some inspiration or ideas for some good gifts, check out the holiday gift guide curated by our friends at Go Little Tokyo!
For more articles and news stories featuring LTSC, visit the “In the News” section of our website.
November 2021 Donors
Thank you to all our supporters for your contributions last month!
Add your name to the list by making a DONATION today.
NOVEMBER 2021 DONORS
Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc.
PayPal Giving Fund
Diana Cardenas and Ben Segura
Shirley Chami and Daniel Kerson
Yi Bing Chen and Ming Shan Liang
Samantha de Castro
Jeffrey and Lorraine Dohzen
Lan Nguyen, Esquire Consulting Inc.
Sumi and John Foley
Jan Fukuhara Dyck
Frank and Betty Hiji
Mark and Sharlene Hirai
Duane and Joy Hirayama
Dick and Pauline Kaku
Minao and Meera Kamegai
Randy, Audrey, Kristen, and Kevin Kiehm
Dennis and Lorraine Kimura
Sadao and Faye Kimura
Steve and Akemi Kayleng Knight
Ford and Frances Kuramoto
Gary and June Masada
Kathy and Mark Masaoka
Charlotte and Vince Matsudaira
Bob and Teresa Matsushima
Diana and Yoshi Matsushima
Microsoft Rewards / Give with Bing
MUFG Union Bank
Mike Murase and June Hibino
Debra Nakatomi and Bob Miyamoto
Sharon and Robin Nakazaki
Jon and Janice Nishimori
Steve and Karen Nishimori
Takashi and Suzuko Oda
John Okita and Michiko Yamamoto
Ryan and Denise Onishi
Tadashi and Geri Sakuma
Margaret and Ken Shimada
Jeff and Christine Shimane
Paul and Kay Shishima
Grant Sunoo and Emily Mayeda
Hayahiko and Sumiko Takase
Kelly and Rintaro Takasu
Craig and Cheryl Tateishi
Dr. Grant and Debbie Uba
Russell and Susan Uchiyama
Mark and Vivien Usui
Lori and Yoshi Usuki
Marsha and Gary Watanabe
Lesley and Russell Wong
Janet Yamamoto Concannon
In Honor of George
In Honor of Hillary’s birthday fundraiser
Bill and Ruth Watanabe
Kathee Yamamoto Fleming
In Honor of Merilynne Quon
In Memory of May Arakaki
In Memory of Toki Hirai
In Memory of Terry and Bob Hulse
In Memory of William Ishibashi
In Memory of Fred (Tadashi) Kato
In Memory of Edward Kotani
Leonard and Marsha Young
In Memory of Dean Matsubayashi
Leslie Ito and Steve Wong
In Memory of Pattie Haines McDonald
In Memory of S. Stephen & Sally Nakashima
In Memory of Fuji, Mas and Sally Okabe
The Okabe Family
In Memory of Judy Nishimoto Ota
Kathy and Mark Masaoka
In Memory of Jeannette Kyoko Sanderson
Emily and Dan Weaver
In Memory of Kiyoshi and Chieko Shimokaji
In Memory of Sally Shoji
David and Debbie Endo
In Memory of Dr. Walter Sumi
Akemi Arakaki and Takao Suzuki
Leslie and Travis Honda
Hoops for Friends
Norman and Mardy Maehara
Art and Margie Mio
MUFG Union Bank
Richard and Masako Murakami
Craig and Cindy Ogawa
Jason and Rachelle Samson
Joanna and Kevin Su
Don and Jocelyn Tahara
Jayne and Gideon Young Family
Terasaki Budokan Memorial Gifts
In Memory of Dean Matsubayashi
In Memory of Pam Nakano
Asians for Miracle Marrow Matches (A3M)
A3M Tribute Gifts
In Honor of Krissy Kobata
Hosoda Bros. Inc.
Marsha and Gary Watanabe
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