Kickoff party October 11
By Staff Writer
Venice Family Clinic, a nonprofit community health center, announced today that it will celebrate its 50th anniversary by asking the community to come together online on Oct. 11 for Health, Justice, Action: The Kickoff Party and then participate in its Week of Action of socially distanced volunteer opportunities that will help people in need and protect public health during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The community can join the Kickoff Party at 6 p.m. on Oct. 11 and see performances by award-winning recording artists Jennifer Hudson and Blake Shelton as well as the South Bay Children’s Choir. They can hear from stage, film and TV stars, including Jason Alexander, Billy Crystal, Whoopi Goldberg, Jon Huertas, Angelica Huston, Mandy Moore, Ray Romano, Chris Sullivan and Molly Shannon. Artist Fritz Chesnut, renowned architect Frank Gehry and writer, producer and director Norman Lear will also participate in the production.
Following the Kickoff Party, Venice Family Clinic is asking the community to participate in a Week of Action from Oct. 11-17 by volunteering to help the 28,000 low-income men, women and children that the Clinic serves, as well as many other people facing financial hardships.
“We are so appreciative of our gifted and generous supporters who are lending their time and talents to our 50th Anniversary Kickoff Party and encourage everyone to tune in for this exciting online event,” said Elizabeth Benson Forer, Venice Family Clinic CEO. “With COVID-19 restrictions limiting our ability to safely get together and volunteer, the Clinic is providing an online Action Pack that offers a range of volunteer activities for our Week of Action.”
These include some socially distanced volunteering opportunities at Clinic locations as well as at-home activities, including donating to Venice Family Clinic or ordering holiday toys and other items online that the Clinic will deliver to people in need. Volunteers may also fill backpacks with school supplies for the Clinic’s pediatric patients. Or they may assemble kits of soap, shampoo and other hygiene items that the Clinic’s street medicine team can distribute to individuals experiencing homelessness.
School supplies and hygiene kits can be delivered to Venice Family Clinic’s Santa Monica site, Simms/Mann Health & Wellness Center, from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. on Oct. 15. It is located at 2509 Pico Blvd., Santa Monica, CA 90405.
“The Week of Action builds on the 50-year history of volunteer support that has been essential to Venice Family Clinic’s ability to provide comprehensive, high-quality health care to people in need,” said Forer. “Our founders, Dr. Philip Rossman and Dr. Mayer Davidson, opened Venice Family Clinic on Oct. 12, 1970 and provided free health care to about a dozen patients that first day. They occupied dental offices they borrowed and used after normal business hours. With the support of thousands of volunteers and a devoted team of health care providers, the Clinic has grown to a network of 14 sites that serve the greater L.A. area.”
In recognition of its many contributions to the region, Los Angeles City Councilmember Mike Bonin is also declaring the week of Oct. 11 to be Venice Family Clinic Week. The declaration calls Venice Family Clinic a “health care leader…a pioneer in health care innovations and an effective advocate for equal access to care for all people.”
UCLA Health and Cedars-Sinai are presenting sponsors for the Clinic’s 50th Anniversary Celebration, and L.A. Care Health Plan, Kaiser Permanente, Health Net and Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan are sponsors for the event as well. The public is invited to register for the Kickoff Party and Week of Action as well as learn more about the Clinic’s 50th Anniversary by visiting VeniceFamilyClinic.org/50years.