Women's Shelter Gifts- 12/22/2022
Every year for the past 5 years, we have given gifts and essentials to a domestic violence women's shelter in California during the holidays. Although we cannot disclose more information out of respect for their privacy and safety, Freedom Community was able to donate things such as journals and pens for the teenagers, art supplies and stuffed animals for the young children, body lotion for the moms and more! We hope these small contributions put a smile on their face and thank you to our generous community for their donations so that we may give back to our neighborhoods.
Family Fun Day & Toy Drive- 12/17/2022
To help those less fortunate than us during this holiday season, Freedom Community aims to give back as much as we can! This year, one of the many things we did to show our support was host a Toy Drive. Hundreds of new toy and other gift donations were collected from our amazing community. With these generous gifts, we made Holiday miracles happen to the housing communities in San Pedro. Kids, teens, and families of all ages and sizes got to pick out toys, accessories, art supplies, etc. and have a whole day of fun! During our event, not only did we give away these gifts but families jammed out to live music and enjoyed some free food! We also had a ton of fun doing activities such as facepaiting, games, dream interpretations and art portraits! Thank you to our community for making such a special day happen. Seeing the smiles on these families' faces was the best gift of all!!
Thank You Dinner - 11/6/2022
Tonight, we celebrated longtime supports and Point Fermin day sponsors to express our gratitude for all they've done for our cause! During this dinner we were able to share our vision of what we're doing and aiming to do in helping children and families with Freedom4U and Hearts Respond! To entertain the night, Sarah Jane, a singer and songwriter based in the South Bay, performed several acoustic covers. Sarah also leads and performs during our monthly Artwalk Expression Night!
Thank you to Labocca Felice for hosting, and another huge thank you to all of our supporters. We couldn't do this without you!
For information on how to become a sponsor for Freedom4U or Hearts Respond, please contact Greg or donate directly via this website!
Drain Painting- 11/5/2022
Today we had the privilege to paint a storm drain at the San Pedro Waterfront Arts District!
These storm drains lead directly to the ocean, so creating artworks like these are extremely important in raising awareness in public littering. Litter that goes unnoticed oftentimes gets washed into these storm drains during heavy rain or street cleaning, and will eventually wind up in the ocean, polluting the sea life. With a beautiful oceanfront community that the South Bay has, we find it paramount that we bring attention to this, as well as work together to keep our community beautiful and clean!
Once again, thanks to the San Pedro Waterfront Arts District for allowing us to engage in this project, and to Thomas and our other volunteers for spending their weekend painting our design!
Heart For Community- Dr. Greg 10/12/22
Who has a heart for the community? Should we care about people outside of our family? Why?
The community is us. We are apart of it. We may seek to be independent and disconnected but
in reality we are all apart of our local communities. Just as one person in a family affects
everyone else in the family. Each of us contributes something to our community. Some cities are
called friendly, some are called unfriendly or exclusive. Some are called ‘party towns’.
The reality is, that each community has it’s own personality, which is shaped by the citizens of it.
How we treat each other, the events we create and participate in, as well as the individual
unique personalities in all of us, form our community’s image and personality.
Family wise, when you help to improve the life of someone in your family, your overall family
benefits. The family members will feel more connected, valued, secure and at peace. Likewise,
when we participate in community activities that improve the community, we all benefit from it.
Each city has many opportunities for recreation, learning, improvements, and fun. Maybe you
have an idea of something that would be new, that isn’t happening and you could form a team to
seek to implement it?
We use the expression about having a ‘heart for the community.’ Our physical heart not only
keeps up alive, but our spiritual/soulful heart has a deep understanding and care for many
things. I encourage you to search your heart about where and what you should go towards in
your community. Listen to your heart. Pay attention to what you feel about different ideas,
causes, gatherings or events.
The ones you feel the most connection or passion about, may be the areas you can connect
with. You don’t to make your efforts a part-time job (unless you want to!). But, you can consider
where to give of your time, energy and resources. It’s been said correctly, that the giver receives
as much as the receiver. There is a heartfelt joy, satisfaction and meaning that we receive when
we give to improve the communities around us.
Maybe you already are doing too much community action and then need to prioritize and do
less? Your heart can guide you in those decisions also, when less activity can be more
beneficial and effective.
Thanks for reading and may you continue to develop and release your heart for the community.
Dr. Greg Allen is a Licensed Therapist practicing in Palos Verdes Estates and in Downtown San
Pedro. ( drgregallen.com ). He is also the founder and director of Freedom4U, a non-profit that
seeks to guide youth towards their life purpose and thereby reduce risky lifestyles.
( freedomcommunity.com ). He also directs the non-profit Hearts Respond, supporting LA Harbor
families in social-emotional and creative areas. ( heartsrespond.com )
PV Magazine- 10/11/22
We are so grateful to be featured in the October issue of the Palos Verdes Magazine! Below you can find scans of the article to read, written by Dr. Greg himself.
Painting Point Fermin Elementary- 9/8/22
Earlier this summer, Hearts Respond and Freedom4U was able to raise $12,000 to aid in the bettering of the Point Fermin Elementary School Campus! Among funding a new playground for the kids, today we gathered volunteers and artists from the community to paint the blacktop for even more playground enrichment. We hope that in adding these fun artworks to the blacktop and walls in the schools: that it promotes group play activity, physical health fitness, imagination and playmate cooperation. These are all fundamental social and imaginary skills in the development of young children's brains, and here at Freedom Community, we are all about helping the kids! Thank you to all of our sponsors for aiding in the funding of bettering the environment for Point Fermin Elementary school. Please click HERE to watch out YouTube video about Point Fermin Day!
NFL player talks to San Pedro HS Football- 9/15/2022
This week, Freedom4U and Hearts Respond presented former NFL football start Mark Seay who came and brought inspiration and motivation to the San Pedro High football team! He discussed his rise to his athletic status, shared some personal stories about his life growing up in San Pedro and overall brought great team morale to the SPH team!
The team was grateful for the Coach Allen legacy and all the helpful information Mark passed onto them!
Student Scholarship- 9/3/2022
We are so proud to announce that with the help of your sponsorships, we were able to gift first generation college student, Katrina Ma, a 500$ Scholarship at the end of her high school career! One of our biggest missions is to help guide the future for the children and teens of the South Bay and Harbor areas. Katrina was a 2022 graduate of the Port of Los Angeles High School, and with this scholarship we hope to help partially fund her tuition, school supplies, or other university needs. Congratulations Katrina, we are so proud of you and cant wait to see what you accomplish in college and beyond!
We also were the benefactor to an anonymous San Pedro resident, gifting him a $1,000 scholarship to pursue his education of Jazz music in New York!
Point Fermin Day Fundraiser- 7/23/2022
On Saturday, July 23rd Hearts Respond along with Freedom4U had the amazing opportunity to sponsor Point Fermin Day, an event to benefit Point Fermin Elementary and aid funding to continue enriching students' experiences at school.
During the event, friends, families and sponsors gathered at Point Fermin Park to enjoy live R&B, Pop, Latin, Rock, Mariachi and Folk music performed by local bands and musicians. The energy in the air was incredible, with families dancing and singing around the park. The kids had a great time splashing around with water guns and water balloon tosses, as others sat to have their faces painted, caricatures drawn of them, and enjoy other weekend activities. Through the help of our sponsors and attendees' generous donations, we were able to raise $12,000 to improve the educational campus environment.
Jennie Wong, the principal of the school, will be using this money to upgrade the playground-
“We’re trying to create a space for students to really enjoy time on the yard,” Wong said. “Where they have multiple opportunities to work together in cooperative groups and to have a place to play and learn from one another.”
We here at Hearts Respond are so excited to help future generations of kids enjoy playing outside at school, and can't wait for another opportunity to continue to give back to the community! In the future, Dr. Greg Allen- our founder- hopes to create another fundraiser for other elementary schools in the Harbor area. To read more about this event, feel free to read this fantastic article by Hunter Chase!