The COVID-19 pandemic has greatly added to the problem of hunger, homelessness and despair in the Los Angeles County. And the number of people experiencing homelessness in the county is alarming. On any given night, there are upwards of 66,000 men, women and children who are homeless and food-insecure on the streets of Los Angeles County.


As homelessness and hunger continue to serve as a reminder of the inequalities around us, one of the organizations on that has been fighting the problem on the frontlines is the Los Angeles Mission.


Located in downtown Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Mission’s efforts are focused on providing help, hope and opportunity to the more than 10,000 homeless people and countless others living in extreme poverty in the city’s gritty 54-block Skid Row area.


The Mission provides, food, clothing and shelter, along with a myriad of rehabilitation, education and job training programs to help homeless men, women and families.


“Since the beginning of the pandemic we’ve been seeing more and more people come to us for food and other services,” said Ivan Klassen, the Los Angeles Mission’s director of Community Partnerships. “Every day, there are more and more people, and especially more families with children, who are in need.”


The Mission counts on the generosity of its partners, like Ralphs and Food 4 Less, to meet the growing need on Skid Row.


“It’s our corporate partners and individual donors that make what we do possible,” said Klassen. “The support we have received from Ralphs and Food 4 Less is a blessing. It’s helping make a difference and bringing hope to the people on Skid Row.”


Ralphs and Food 4 Less have been supporting the Los Angeles Mission for many years with in-kind donations of food and other items. Since 2018, the supermarket partners have also given nearly $150,000 in financial assistance as part of our Zero Hunger I Zero Waste social impact initiative, which has a goal of ending hunger our communities by 2025.


“Ralphs and Food 4 Less recognize the important work the Los Angeles Mission is doing within the Los Angeles community by helping those in need to get back on track,” John Votava, manager of Corporate Affairs for Ralphs. “We believe we have a special responsibility to support our most vulnerable friends and neighbors, especially those living on our streets, hungry and without a home.”


Much of the money and assistance Ralphs and Food 4 Less have given over the years has been used to support the Mission’s kitchen operation which provides three hot meals daily to Skid Row’s homeless and hungry.


“We appreciate the support from Ralphs and Food 4 Less. Without their donations, we wouldn’t be able to feed as many people as we do,” said Klassen. “The grants and other support we’ve received from Ralphs and Food 4 Less have helped us meet the growing need on Skid Row.”


Ralphs and Food 4 Less’ generosity will pay for about 73,000 meals for hungry men, women and children that rely on the Mission for food.


“Our great city is in crisis, and partners like Ralphs and Food 4 Less are vital,” said Klassen. “Support we receive from Ralphs and Food 4 Less helps ensure we can continue to change lives and rescue more people from the streets of Los Angeles.”


The Los Angeles Mission was established in 1936 as a soup kitchen and Christian outreach to the homeless on Skid Row. To learn more about the Los Angeles Mission and support its work, visit