Thanksgiving Dinner & Clothing Boutique
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Contact:  Delis Alejandra, Pastoral Associate  |  310 566-1530  | 

On Wednesday, November 25, 2015, from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., St. Monica Catholic Community will host its 36th Annual Thanksgiving Dinner for an expected 1000 guests. Served family-style, the dinner is an uplifting event especially for those in need, but all are welcome to join us including children of all ages! The dinner is followed by a boutique with free items of clothing, blankets, sleeping bags, and toiletries.

 

This great tradition at St. Monica brings together every grade in our schools, every ministry in the parish, neighbors, dozens of household and restaurant kitchens, and hundreds of volunteers to feed and clothe men and women who need an extra lift for the holidays.

 

As a community we feel strongly that everyone be able to enjoy this most sacred of American holidays. Partaking in our dinner at St. Monica may be their only opportunity to sit down at a holiday meal or opportunity to pick up a clothing item that will protect them from the elements this winter season. To prepare for our guests, we welcome donations, volunteers, and especially your prayers!

 

The dinner is served in Cantwell Auditorium on the St. Monica campus; Entrance is accessible from the corner of 7th Street and Washington Blvd.

 

Contact:  Delis Alejandra, Pastoral Associate  |  310 566-1530  | 

On Wednesday, November 25, 2015, from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., St. Monica Catholic Community will host its 36th Annual Thanksgiving Dinner for an expected 1000 guests. Served family-style, the dinner is an uplifting event especially for those in need, but all are welcome to join us including children of all ages! The dinner is followed by a boutique with free items of clothing, blankets, sleeping bags, and toiletries.

 

This great tradition at St. Monica brings together every grade in our schools, every ministry in the parish, neighbors, dozens of household and restaurant kitchens, and hundreds of volunteers to feed and clothe men and women who need an extra lift for the holidays.

 

As a community we feel strongly that everyone be able to enjoy this most sacred of American holidays. Partaking in our dinner at St. Monica may be their only opportunity to sit down at a holiday meal or opportunity to pick up a clothing item that will protect them from the elements this winter season. To prepare for our guests, we welcome donations, volunteers, and especially your prayers!

 

The dinner is served in Cantwell Auditorium on the St. Monica campus; Entrance is accessible from the corner of 7th Street and Washington Blvd.

 

Volunteer

Interested in general organizing or pre-planning? Contact Delis Alejandro at or (310) 566-1530.

We need approximately 700 volunteers to help plan and shop, set up, prepare, cook and serve, collect and distribute, and clean up. A majority of our volunteer positions are for the day of the event; we also have volunteer positions for days and evenings prior to the event

 

How to sign up
Volunteers must sign up in person and can do so during the weekends of November 7-8, 14-15, and 21-22 in the Duval Center after all Masses. We do not accept sign ups over the phone or by email, as policies mandated by the Archdiocese of Los Angeles require us to meet face to face with all volunteers before the event. When you sign up, you will be able to view a list of all positions and receive guidelines and the location of your service.

 

Please note: Some positions may require VIRTUS Certification and Fingerprinting.

 

Download Instructions for confirmed volunteers

 

Donate

Beginning November 1, all donations including food and items for the boutique (except turkeys and pies*) can be dropped off to the bins in the Duval Center during any weekend through November 22. During the week, donations can be left in the Parish Office during regular business hours. See below for what we need:

 

Perishable Food Items
120 Cooked Turkeys
200 Cooked Pumpkin Pies  (8 or 9 inches round)

 

*All turkeys and pies must be delivered the morning of Wednesday, November 25 between 6 am and noon. Enter on California and follow signs for drop off.

 

Non Perishable Food Items
1200 servings of the following:

  • Instant, boxed or bagged stuffing
  • Instant, boxed, or bagged mashed potatoes
  • Canned or economy size cranberry sauce
  • Canned green beans
  • Canned or bottled turkey gravy
  • Regular and Decaffeineated Coffee
  • Canned or bottled turkey gravy
  • Juice boxes

We accept any size and in any quantity

 

The Milk Fund
To ensure freshness, the bread and milk for the meal is purchased on the day of the event. If you would like to contribute a cash donation, go to www.stmonica.net/give2

 

Clothing Boutique Items

We need the following for men, women and children, with particular emphasis on cold weather clothing for winter:

  • Coats and Jackets
  • Sweaters
  • Pants and Shirts
  • Sweatshirts and Hoodies
  • Boots and Shoes
  • ·Ponchos
  • Rain Gear
  • Caps, Mittens, Gloves

Always useful:

  • Men’s and women’s underwear-new only
  • Socks-New and Used

Special Needs:

  • Backpacks
  • Blankets and Bedspreads
  • Sleeping Bags

Please note: We will accept any clothing donated in all sizes, however all items must be clean. We have a particular need for extra large sizes e.g. 2xx, 3xx and tall sizes. The majority of our guests are men who spend a lot of time outside. We could also use donations of hangers and plastic or cloth bags.

 

Travel-size Toiletry Donations

We need completed care kits (one gallon Ziploc bags with travel-size toiletries) for our guests with one each of the following:

  • Toothpaste, toothbrush and mouthwash
  • Soap or Body Wash
  • Bottle of shampoo and conditioner
  • Deodorant
  • Body Lotion
  • Bag of Kleenex and Wet Wipes
  • Bandaids
  • Q Tip Swabs

Optional:

  • Tube of Neosporin
  • Tube of Lip Balm

Do not include razors, razor blades, tweezers, safety pins, money, or personal info.

 

Cash Donations

We also accept cash donations to purchase large-quantity items such as milk and bread and other necessary items for the dinner and clothing boutique that are not donated. Make your gift online at www.stmonica.net/give. Donations can also be left at the Parish Office made to the attention of Delis Alejandro.  Make checks payable to St. Monica Catholic Church.

FAQ

1.  When and where is the dinner?
Each year, the dinner is held on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving Day. In 2015 the dinner will be held on Wednesday, November 25, from 3-6 pm in Cantwell Auditorium, located on the St. Monica Campus. The church address is 725 California Avenue in Santa Monica.

 

2.  Who can come to the dinner?

Adults and children of all ages. All are welcome!

 

3.  Do I need a ticket or reserve a space?
No. You do not need a ticket or reserve a space for dinner. Just come anytime between 3:00 and 6:00 p.m.

 

4.  When and where should I get in line?

You can arrive anytime you wish. However, if you arrive several hours before the event starts at 3:00 p.m. you will be given a numbered ticket, allowing you to leave and return closer to 3:00 p.m. without losing your place in line. The time we will start handing out numbered tickets will be listed in the fall.

 

5. Do you provide Thanksgiving Dinners to people who are homebound, because of illness or mobility challenges?

Yes. We happily deliver Thanksgiving Dinner baskets to people who are homebound. If you know of anyone who would enjoy a meal delivered to their door, please contact Christine Gerety at  or (310) 566-1531 by Sunday, November 22, and provide the recipient’s name, address, and phone number.

 

Also contact Christine if you would like to learn more about what we do to decorate baskets and how we pack them with food,

 

6. Where should I park?

Until early afternoon, we have free underground parking under the Caruso Community Center located on the corner of 7th and California Avenue. There is also parking available in the lot located at 1401 7th Street and on the streets. Please read the street signs for parking restrictions. We encourage carpooling when possible. We also have several bike racks available on site.

7. Are there any buses that have stops nearby?
The Santa Monica Blue Bus line has stops for the number 2, 3 and 9 busses all within one block or a block and a half of the dinner.

8. How do I sign up to volunteer?

We only accept sign ups in person. Please refer to the volunteer tab above for instructions.

 

9. Can I just show up to help?
No. Because of the size of the event, we cannot accommodate any walk-in volunteers. You must have an assigned position.

10. Is my donation tax- deductible?
Yes. All donations are tax-deductible. You can get a tax receipt when you donate throughout the month of November in the Duval Center or in the Parish Office. You can also pick up a tax receipt on the day of the event.

 

11. Can I make a cash donation?

You can either leave a check made out to St. Monica Catholic Church in the Parish Office or you can make a gift online through your credit or debit card.

 

12. What If I can’t help on the day of the event. Are there other ways I can volunteer?

We have several different ways you can help!

  • Volunteers are needed to help with marketing, publicity, and procuring sponsorships.
  • Consider reaching out to a local department, home goods or grocery and requesting on our behalf donations of any of our clothing and toiletry needs. If you find a business who would like to make a donation, contact Clarence Smith at
  • Consider a clothes or toiletries drive among your family, friends and colleagues for our dinner anytime this summer or fall. Just deliver them to the parish by November 22.
  • Save travel-size toiletries from all of you trips throughout the year.

13. Can the press come and take photos?

All members of the press are invited to attend, however, no photos or videos of our guests are allowed out of respect for their privacy You must contact our communications director prior to the event. Call the parish office at (310) 566-1500.

 

14.  Are there other places that serve a free Thanksgiving dinner on the Westside other than St. Monica?
Yes. Go to or contact 310-394-3153 about the Westside Thanksgiving Dinner & Celebration that is held annually on Thanksgiving Day.

 

15. Where else can I volunteer during Thanksgiving or the holidays?

At St. Monica, you can volunteer and/donate for the following:

  • Loaves and Fishes Food Drive, our montly effort to collect non-perishable food items for local shelters and food pantries. Learn more at www.stmonica.net/loavesandfishes
  • Help prepare and serve a meal to residents of the following transitional shelters for the homeless in our community: • P.A.T.H. - 1st Sunday of the month • Samoshel - 2nd Sunday of the month • Turning Point - 3rd Sunday of the month
  • Serve at St. Robert’s Weekend Food Pantry, a weekend food pantry located in Venice. Volunteers from St. Monica participate every six weeks by making sandwiches, sorting clothes, and organizing supplies. On Saturday, we have two shifts: 11:30 to 1:30 p.m. and 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. and on Sunday, one shift : 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. Learn more at www.stmonica.net/weekendfoodpantry
  • Participate in one of our holiday outreach programs that includes Angel toy Drive, Adopt-a-Family, and the St. Joseph Center Holiday Party. Go to www.stmonica.net/holidayoutreach for more information

In the community, there is an alliance called Westside Coalition that consists of over 35 organizations, public agencies and faith communities committed to ending hunger and homelessness through service coordination, public education and advocacy. The Westside Coalition connects potential volunteers to agencies that need them. For more information, go to http://www.westsideshelter.org/volunteer-sign-up.html

 

16. Where can I go if I need help?
This is not an exhaustive list but a good place to start.

  • 211
    The LA County 24 hour referral center for resources including food, and shelter.
  • Ocean Park Community Center
    A network of housing and services that assist low-income, homeless and at-risk youth, adults and families, battered women and their children, and people living with mental illness.
  • St. Joseph Center
    Helps homeless men and women, as well as working poor families, build the inner resources and tools needed to become productive, stable, and self-supporting members of the community.
  • Chrysalis
    Helps low-income and homeless residents in Santa Monica remove barriers to employment. The agency’s work in Santa Monica includes employment workshops and an on-staff weekly presence in the Pico Neighborhood at Virginia Avenue Park.
  • Venice Family Clinic
    Provides free, quality health care to people in need including homeless and low-income individuals in Santa Monica.

Sponsors

Contact:  Clarence Smith at for more information.

Join us as we prepare a place at the table for over 1000 people this coming Thanksgiving. Help sponsor our Thanksgiving Dinner and Boutique and be a part of the team.

 

$5,000:  Logo inclusion on the website, and a banner at the event, include company on all emailed/printed materials

$1,000:  Logo inclusion on the website and a banner at the event

$500:     Include company on all emailed materials


Mass

Mon - Fri:  6:30a, 8:00a, 12:10p

Sat:  8:00a, 5:30p

Sun:  7:30a, 9:30a, 11:30a, 1:15p, 5:30p

 

Confession

Mon - Fri:  5:30-6:00p

Sat:  4:30-5:00p

04Sep
Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament Friday, Sep 4 @ 7:00 AM
07Sep
Parish Office Closed Monday, Sep 7 - All Day
07Sep
RCIA Monday, Sep 7 @ 7:00 PM
08Sep
Parish/Ministry Council Orientation Tuesday, Sep 8 @ 6:30 PM
08Sep
Legion of Mary Tuesday, Sep 8 @ 7:00 PM

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