Volunteers from across Southern California have come together to ship out care packages containing food, vitamins and other supplies to Liberia, to help victims and families affected by the Ebola outbreak in West Africa.
Volunteers of all ages and from different organizations are helping the Children’s Hunger Fund, in packaging and shipping out the 21 tons of food from Los Angeles.
"It’s more than just food," said Steve Doucette of the of Children’s Hunger Fund.
The idea for volunteers is to send their symbolic support to the parents and children affected by the disease.
"Usually what people are looking for is hope," said 15-year-old volunteer Codie. "They want to hope in something and this brings hope."
Other volunteers expressed similar sentiments.
"Sometimes we feel really helpless because we're here and they're way over there struggling with Ebola but this is a tangible way we can show our kids how our little effort here makes such a big impact over there," said American Heritage Girls volunteer Kirsten Lucas. "I would be impacted as a parent knowing someone wanted to feed my family and loved us enough, that would be huge."
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A lot of the food has been at the warehouse for weeks, not because of the difficulty of getting into Liberia, but the difficulty of just getting out of the Los Angeles ports.
"The Port of LA has had a mini-port strike so things are weeks, if not months, backed up," said Chris Rowlett of the Children’s Hunger Fund.
Getting everything in LA over to Liberia has been tough, but the volunteers are hopeful everything can be shipped out on Friday as expected, Rowlett said.
"I can imagine happiness," said 10-year-old volunteer Micah.