In 2014, instead of buying gifts for each other to celebrate the holidays, OTA’s Customer Service Agent, Eloise Parker and her partner, Dennis, decided they would buy for the homeless of Orange County. They purchased toothpaste, soap, deodorant, beanies, socks, gloves and other personal hygiene items and then handed them out to those in need at the riverbed in Santa Ana as well as a homeless encampment in Long Beach.
“We wanted to give back to our community and show those who are struggling that they are loved and not forgotten,” says Eloise.
Homelessness in Orange County is on the rise. The 2017 federally mandated census recorded 4,792 homeless people in Orange County alone; a 13 percent increase since 2014. More than half of these individual are living without shelter; many of them lacking basic needs.
Last year, Eloise’s coworkers, Customer Service Agents Ana Cazarez and Maira Preciado, joined the cause. With the help of their families, they collected clothes and toiletries, made sandwiches and passed out 175 care packages. This year, with the help of our OTA family, they increased that number. Thank goodness. With temperatures dropping in December—sometimes into the 30’s at night—blankets are on everyone’s wish list.
If you would like to help but shopping is not your thing, you can also go to GP Care Packages GoFundMe Account to make a donation. All contributions will go to purchasing food, water, blankets, and other helpful items.
Here is the link to the GoFundMe Account: https://www.gofundme.com/gp-care-packages
Eloise and her team would like to thank you in advance for your contribution and helping them to continue this holiday tradition of giving.