one by one® story: Watts Empowerment Center
Fresh vegetables. Sweet fruits. Healthy grains. Some people don’t get to choose what kinds of food they feed their children—whether it’s because they’re unable to afford to or because they have to rely on what a local food bank provides. The Watts Empowerment Center, located in a Los Angeles housing project, provides a variety of high-quality foods to the community. Every Friday, the organization packs 35 tables with nutritious food for people to select from. And by covering each table with a branded tablecloth, this free “farmers market” has an elevated feel.
Serving the community in countless ways
While the average age of those served by the Watts Empowerment Center is 21, children 10 and under are the largest group served. Many of these youth often babysit other children—“kids raising kids,” as Annie Waters, Program and Scheduling Director, says.
In addition to providing a free weekly farmers market, The Watts Empowerment Center helps children and their families in many other ways, from offering meals and cooking lessons to providing help with homework and a safe place to hang out. And with its new studio, the Watts Empowerment Center is also teaching kids the skills they need to become audio engineers.
From being helped to helping
With a line of tables draped with beautiful, branded tablecloths, the farmers market is a dignified, fun place for the community to choose the foods they want. Many who come to the farmers market don’t understand English. The Watts Empowerment Center was in a need of a translator and found one in one of the weekly farmers market patrons. Bacillia, who is fluent in English and Spanish, began volunteering as a translator for the center and today is a paid staff member.
“We’re thrilled Bacillia is part of our team now. Our goal is to empower people living in the community to work and find the skills they need to live their life how they want and be able to reach their goals,” Waters said.
A note from Cheryl
We’re thrilled to hear about the work the Watts Empowerment Center is doing for their community. It’s an honor to provide the branded tablecloths the organization used to provide an elevated experience for people visiting the farmers market. To learn more about 4imprint’s one by one® grant program, visit onebyone.4imprint.com.