LTSCene – May 2019 - 9 LTSC Youth Group Members Will Be First Generation College Students - Little Tokyo Service Center

Chosen logo for LTSCene by Little Tokyo Service Center


May 2019 Issue

UC Merced, LTSC featured Inspiring stories

UC Merced, LTSC featured Inspiring stories

Alexis of LTSC’s Angelina Apartments will attend UC Merced in the fall.

9 LTSC Youth Group Members Will Be First Generation College Students

Find the news about the college admissions scandal disheartening? These students are earning their way into college with heart, hard work and support from LTSC.

Save the Date for Sake on the Rocks

Save the Date for Sake on the Rocks

Save the Date for Sake on the Rocks

LTSC will hold its 13th annual sake and food tasting event Sake on the Rocks on Friday, July 19, 2019 at the Japanese American Cultural and Community Center. Tickets for LTSC’s signature fundraising event will go on sale on June 1. Please contact with event questions.

Click here for pictures from Sake on the Rocks 2018
Click here for the Sake on the Rocks 2018 video

Graffiti with a Purpose

Graffiti with a Purpose

Graffiti with a Purpose

LTSC staff leave their mark on fencing around the Budokan site.

The skeletal outline of a large structure looms over the fabric-covered chain link fence at 249 S. Los Angeles, the site of Terasaki Budokan sports and activities center now being constructed. Passing motorists cannot help but see the colorful “graffiti” on the privacy screen that was put up by the Budokan Taggers in an effort to preempt unwanted writing by local vandals.

The Big Gym in Little Tokyo is nearing its “topping off” when the building reaches the point when the highest beam will be lifted in place by the end of May. Heavy construction by Walton Construction is scheduled to be completed by the end of the year and the long-awaited $34 million sports and activities complex is slated to open by March 2020.

In the meantime, the Budokan fundraising team announced significant progress in closing the fundraising gap which, at the start of construction a year ago was $4.1 million, is now at $1.88 million.

“We’re really excited about the progress of construction, but also are very hopeful that people in our community will step forward to help us close the final gap in fundraising,” said Ryan Lee, the newly-appointed Budokan Director. “I know that Budokan will be unlike any other gym in Southern California. Japanese Americans and other visitors to Little Tokyo as well as local residents, particularly low-income youth and seniors, will make good use of our facility,” Lee added.

Click here to help close the gap to build Budokan.

LTSC Thanks Social Services Volunteers

LTSC staff and Social Services volunteers

LTSC staff and Social Services volunteers

Whether assisting with care management, providing counseling and therapy services, distributing referral information or conducting numerous other activities that promote wellness, LTSC’s Social Services department could not carry out its mission without its dedicated volunteers.

The social services department celebrated its volunteers last month with a special reception at Izakaya & BAR Fu-ga

Thank you, social services volunteers, for all that you do.

Get Your Tickets for Straight Outta Little Tokyo 4

Straight Outta Little Tokyo 4

Straight Outta Little Tokyo 4

On Saturday June 29 at 7 p.m. at Nishi Hongwanji Buddhist Temple, supporters of Budokan will gather for a nostalgic night of 90s hip hop and R&B with live performances by Rodney O and Trinere.

Don’t miss the DJs, b-boy/girl battle, car show, games, food, drinks and chance to reunite with friends, all supporting the campaign to build Terasaki Budokan (aka the Big Gym in Little Tokyo).

Click here for more information and to buy tickets.

Angelina Basketball Tournament

3-on-3 basketball tournament for residents of the Angelina Apartments

From left: Wayne Arnold, Kevin Moscoso, Erick Pineda, Albert Patterson and John Acosta

Each year, LTSC holds a 3-on-3 basketball tournament for residents of the Angelina Apartments affordable housing community in the Temple-Beaudry area of Echo Park. LTSC Resident Services organizes the tournament to engage young residents, build friendships and promote a sense of community at Angelina.

As always, this year’s tournament was filled with competitive games, highlight plays and good sportsmanship. In its 22nd year, the tournament featured four teams and eight new players.

LTSC Small Business Assistance Video

Throughout the year, LTSC’s Small Business Assistance Program hosts entrepreneur training workshops in English and Japanese.

Thanks to our community partners, like the Gardena Valley Japanese Cultural Institute, we are able to host these workshops free of charge. Seasoned entrepreneurs, industry professionals and city officials participate as guest speakers, sharing their immense knowledge with a new wave of up and coming entrepreneurs. Mylen Yamamoto, founder and CEO of Cropsticks, is one of the entrepreneurs who have generously shared their time and experience.

Thank you, Mylen and the rest of the Cropmade team for inviting us to be a part of your journey. We are so grateful for your active participation in the community.

Watch the video on Mylen and Cropsticks.

Seniors Visit Huntington Museum

Seniors Visit Huntington Museum

Seniors Visit Huntington Museum

On a beautiful Wednesday in April, Little Tokyo Senior Resident Association took a day trip to Huntington Library. Affordable group outings like this are a way to keep seniors physically and socially active.

Flowers were in full bloom and the weather was ideal for the visit. Touring the gardens with gardeners and curators and learning about the flowers made the trip extra special. Thank you so much to the Huntington Library staff for a fun-filled day.

Partner Spotlight: Citi Community Development

Partner Spotlight: Citi Community Development

Citi Community Development

Aging Asian Americans, particularly those with low-incomes and limited English proficiency, can be vulnerable to financial scams. With support from Citi Community Development, LTSC educates seniors and their caregivers about how to identify senior scams, provide assistance to victims of financial scams, and help seniors financially plan for later-life. The Asian Pacific Islander Elder Financial Empowerment Program serves family members and others involved in caring for these seniors to bring more awareness of fraud to the community.

Last year, with Citi’s support, LTSC provided information and referrals to more than 300 seniors. More than 80% of them needed information or services in a language other than English, with 59% needing assistance in Japanese and 21% needing assistance in Korean. Almost half of the seniors were getting by on $1,000 per month or less.

Thanks to catalytic support from Citi, LTSC has been able to assist many clients including an elderly Japanese-speaking couple who, due to rising rents, were forced to move out of their apartment of 20+ years with no relocation assistance. LTSC assisted them with finding a new apartment and their moving expenses. After the move, LTSC was able to continue to help them with care management and accessing resources such as health insurance and CalFresh. With more of their income going towards rent and having no family in LA, the services provided by LTSC allowed them to continue to live independently in the community.

LTSC thanks Citi for its support of LTSC’s services to the community.

Dodgers Manager Dave Roberts Meets with LTSC, Changing Tides

Dave Roberts meets with members of LTSC’s staff

Dave Roberts meets with members of LTSC’s staff and Changing Tides.

LA Dodgers Manager Dave Roberts will be the Honorary Chair of a May 19 event for Changing Tides. Changing Tides is a partnership initiative between a youth/young adult outreach group and LTSC that is dedicated to ending the stigma surrounding mental health and normalizing healthy discussions within the Asian American community.

Members of LTSC’s staff and the Changing Tides committee recently met with Roberts on the final day of the Dodgers spring training camp in Camelback, Arizona. Following the meeting, the group was allowed access to a special area where they could watch the players’ pre-game warm-up.

We appreciate Dave Roberts’ support for Changing Tides.


Thank you to all our supporters for your contributions last month!

April 2019 Donors

Dennis Arguelles
Marlene Berry
Elizabeth Burton
Consulate General of Japan
Everett and Gladys Endow
Akemi Fujimoto
Jerry Fukui
Paul Jay Fukushima
Lisa Hasegawa
Maya Hayashi and Michael Taila
Dee A. Hayashi
Kelly Takasu
Peter Huang
Takahiro Ide
Tamotsu Ikeda
Kambara Family Fund
Jessica Kanai Tateishi
Suzy Katsuda
D.K. Kazahaya
Lily Kazahaya
Iku Kiriyama
Dawn and Alan Kita
Kaitlin Claire Kitayama
Steve and Akemi Kayleng Knight
Reiko Kondo
James Kwon
Laura Shiozaki Lee
Kelvin Lee
Grace Maruyama
Kathy and Mark Masaoka
Dr. Jon and Stephanie Matsunaga
Robert and Teresa Matsushima
Jim and Patsy Matsushita
Jeff and Christine Murakami
Richard and Masako Murakami
Mike Murase and June Hibino
Alan and Yvonne Nishio
David and Mary Noguchi
Miguel Nunez
Michael and Margie Odanaka
Steven and Shirley Ogata
John Okita and Michiko Yamamoto
Lloyd Kajikawa and Silvina Rubinstein
Glenn and Donna Sanada
Kitty Sankey
Kirk and Traci Sasaki
Sam and Kuniko Shimoguchi
Lisa Sugino and Jay Rosenthal
Lillian Sugita
Nikki Kealalio Sutton
Yuka Takeuchi
Mike Tanaka and Jill Ishida
Glenn Togawa
Kaz and Cynthia Uemura
Keith Umemoto
Mark and Vivien Usui
Gary Uyekawa
Edward and Momoyo Wada
Gordon and Massumi Yamamoto
Ken and Sandy Yamashiro
Gerald and Anne Yee
Catherine Yen
Nolan Young

In Honor of Bill Watanabe
David Yoo

In Memory of Harry and Misako Honda
The Arra Family

In Memory of Jeannette Kyoko Sanderson
Emily and Dan Weaver

In Memory of Linda Seu
Suzy Katsuda


Terasaki Budokan

Don and Lynn Akamine
Akemi Arakaki and Takao Suzuki
Laura Blosser and Chris Argyros
Scott Ito and Nan Lee
Dr. and Mrs. Iwao G. Kawakami
Chester and Eileen Kido
Jessie Kikuchi and Brent Mori
Ken and Priscilla Mui
Jeff and Christine Murakami
Mike Murase and June Hibino
Mickie Okamoto and Geoffrey Tsudama
Grant Sunoo and Emily Maeda
Nikki Kealalio Sutton
Ken Wada

In Honor of Linda Wolvek
Yasmin Elming

In Memory of Stanley Furuta
Noel Kinoshita

In Memory of Alice Kikkawa
Acura of Glendale
Julia Cassetta
Akimi Ching
Susan Egami
Barbara Fujimoto
Irene Fujimoto
Craig Fujimoto
Lillian Fukutani
Clifford Furukado
Kathleen Gross
June and Ken Hayashi
Donna Hirano
Sandee Hiyake
Patricia Iba
Gerald Ito
Scott Ito and Nan Lee
Eric Kau
Steve C. Kawano
Richard and Misa Kawano
Danny and Marsha Kayano
Don Kikkawa
Michie Kimizuka
Noel Kinoshita
Tommy Korn
Bobby Korn
Aidan Kosaka
Lil Kusayanagi
Bradford Lee
Julie Lee
Irma Loper
Susan Maki
Sumie Marutani
Jane Mashiko
Alva Mayo
Jo Monahan
Pauline Morita
Steve, Lisa and Kiley Murakami
Janice Nagao
Henreen Nunley
Barbara Okada
Curtis Okamoto
Shizuko Okino
Pasadena Bruins
Ken Sakaida
Kerilyn Sato
Hisao Shigeishi
Connie Sims
Jane Smith
George Sugimoto
Benjamas Sungkamee
Emiko Tagami
Margaret and Dick Takimoto
Curtis Takimoto
Miyeko Toshima
Mitzi Toshima
Joe and Agnes Uchida
Sachiko Watari
Kris Weiss
Sylvia Wu
Clement and Angie Yang
Wayne Yoshioka
Eugenie Wong Young

In Memory of Denny Sunabe
Nancy Goto

In-kind Donations

Marsha and Gary Watanabe


Vehicle Donations

Dean Sasaki

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