Inter-City Volunteers of Pomona Valley, a volunteer program to aid the less fortunate and homeless, received eight floors worth of furniture from the Sheraton Suites Fairplex hotel on Tuesday, enough to help nearly 300 families and individuals. All of the furniture has been disbursed.
“This is huge,” said Deanna Shacklett, president and co-founder of Inter-City Volunteers, of the donation. “This is bound to lift all the recipients’ spirits.”
The donation, which included sofas, televisions, draperies, desks, chairs, lamps, tables, refrigerators and microwaves, was dispersed among four Los Angeles-based agencies: Dream Center, Los Angeles; Teen Challenge International, Los Angeles chapter; Los Angeles Mission; and Union Rescue Mission.
All of these agencies operate shelters and assist in transitional living from shelters for those individuals and families attempting to get back on their feet, said Shacklett.
“Their focus is rehabilitation. To have the families move into a home or apartment with a coordinated room, this will only help them feel great.”
Vilma Strayhand, gifts in kind director for Dream Center, said they usually get donations of furniture from individuals and it isn’t always in the best condition. She said the Sheraton gift will greatly benefit the center, a live-in facility for teens and adults housed in what was formerly Queen of Angels Hospital.
The hotel is undergoing renovations, including receiving new furniture in all the suites. Fairplex has a relationship with Inter-City Volunteers, so it was natural to consider the organization for the furniture donation, said Dwight Richards, vice president of operations for the Los Angeles County Fair Association. For years the organization has cooked turkeys on the Fairplex grounds for its Thanksgiving and Christmas food baskets. Shacklett also runs the Toad in the Hole food stand during the L.A. County Fair, with proceeds going to Inter-City Volunteers.
“Plus, they are a Pomona-based organization and we’re always looking to give back to the community,” said Richards.