We Give Thanks 2018


We Give Thanks 2018.  All photos by Paris Barraza

We Give Thanks 2018.

All photos by Paris Barraza

Brandon Olguin and Sophie Ngorn exited the Honda Center hand in hand as dozens of members from Orange County and beyond entered. They volunteered for We Give Thanks 2018 since 8 a.m., three hours before the event opened to the community. Though it was Ngorn’s fourth year, she expressed her continual willingness to participate:

“We just have so much, it gives me a good feeling.”

Brandon Olguin and Sophie Ngorn.

Brandon Olguin and Sophie Ngorn.

Nov. 22, marks the 31st annual We Give Thanks Event at the Honda Center in Anaheim. Members of the community were invited to share a meal, at no cost, with the help of sponsors, including Wells Fargo and an estimated 1,500 volunteers.

Wells Fargo donation.

Wells Fargo donation.

Volunteers at We Give Thanks.

Volunteers at We Give Thanks.

Nonprofit Organization Serve the Way helping at the event.

Nonprofit Organization Serve the Way helping at the event.

We Give Thanks began with founder and owner of La Casa Garcia Frank Garcia, a man now in his seventies who understood the importance of helping others over three decades ago. What originated as an event for the homeless and those in need evolved into a larger, communal event for food, entertainment and an opportunity to celebrate and give back on the Thanksgiving holiday.

Performer at We Give Thanks.

Performer at We Give Thanks.

Over 200,000 meals have been served at We Give Thanks with the help of volunteers like Yuvi Lopez and her friend Bianca Rodriguez, who participated in the event in previous years.

“Just giving back to the community, especially during these last couple days with the shooting, with the fires. It’s just nice to be humbled and give back and help out," Rodriguez states.

Yuvi Lopez and Bianca Rodriguez.

Yuvi Lopez and Bianca Rodriguez.