"Hsi Lai Temple's Blessing for Winter" - Toy and Clothing Drive was held by Fo Guang Shan Hsi Lai Temple and the BLIA Los Angeles Chapter on December 4th and 10th. Fo Guang members gathered and donated clothes and toys in the Hsi Lai Center parking lot. The superintendent of Hsi Lai Temple, Ven. Yi Shan, the President of BLIA Los Angeles Chapter, Alex Wu, and the Deputy Chair of BLIA Los Angeles Chapter Elder Advisors Committee, Ms. Gena Ooi, and many Fo Guang members attended the event. Everyone joyfully gathered together to extend loving-kindness and compassion to friends — of varying ages - in California homeless shelters during the cold winter months.
Repurposed Clothing Drive
On the morning of December 4, members of BLIA Long Beach Subchapter gathered, in the parking lot of the Hsi Lai Center, to sort out old clothes including, bed sheets, household utensils, shoes, etc, donated from various parties. Eighteen pallets filled up a 20-foot truck.
The clothing collection drive started in 2015 and, each year after, has successfully collected and donated clothing to the Long Beach Rescue Mission—the second largest homeless shelter in Los Angeles County. Fo Guang members continue to give generously, hoping to help provide much needed warmth to numerous homeless friends throughout the cold winter months.
After repacking the donated toys, Ven. Hui Ze, Ven. Zhi San, Ms. Gena Ooi, and three other Fo Guang members, representing Hsi Lai Temple and the BLIA delivered the toys to the Hacienda Heights Community Center (HHCC) and the California Highway Patrol (CHP) in the area. A total of about 4000 toys were given to HHCC and CHP. In turn, they will pass the love on by delivering the toys to non-profit organizations, who in turn will place the gifts into the hands and hearts of awaiting Californian children and adults.
This charity event has been ongoing for nearly 30 years. Through deep cultivation in the local area and integration with the local community, it has been and continues to be an opportunity to practice and to keep alive the joyful spirit of Humanistic Buddhism, throughout the festival season of December.