A Month Full of Love at Penny Lane

March 3, 2024

Antelope Valley TAY Love Bites Event

After a cold, dark winter storm hit in early February, the day of love began approaching. The AV TAY center was inspired to host a Valentine’s Day Party for our TAY clients. The AV TAY conference room was visited by many cupids who worked hard to decorate the conference room with red, white, and pink tablecloths, Valentine’s balloons, and banners to celebrate the special day. The party started with a delicious pizza lunch. Our staff and youth engaged in a heartfelt conversation centered around different ways you can show yourself some love. Some wonderful self-care ideas the TAY staff and clients came up with were journaling, spending time with friends, and much more. To make Valentine’s memorable for our TAY clients, we included activities such as decorating cupcakes, eating chocolate covered strawberries, and making cards for those we love and consider close to us. Valentine’s Day at the AV TAY center introduces the idea that no matter the differences; where you come from, where you live, what you believe in, or who you love…opening your heart and learning to love those around you, including yourself is a beautiful way to celebrate.

-Marvin Sandoval, Penny Lane Centers

Check out some more photos below!

Substance Use Disorder (SUD): Feeling the Love on Valentine's Day

During the end of the year, it was a bit challenging for SUD to gather and recap the highlights of the past 12 months. Since February is known as the heart month, in which Penny Lane Centers strives to be just that, heart centered. We chose February 14th to celebrate with our second annual SUD brunch, having all three sites come together and create a memorable day. February is the month where the sharing of love for our special ones is evident through various forms. Valentine’s Day celebrates the bond and the relationship between people, to express love, care and respect for anyone who is important in our life.

We celebrated our staff with delicious food, gifts, acknowledgements and played a game by asking everyone what their favorite RomCom was, which then it progressed into a lively discussion about favorite movies overall. Learning just a bit more about each other. We welcomed staff that were on maternity leave and new staff to Penny Lane Centers. Thank you to the admin team for all your hard work, trainings and updates that were provided and in making this gathering a success Thank you to our entire SUD staff for showing up each day for your clients. You are all amazing, beautiful humans and we celebrate you with love. Till next time!

-Jeniffer Barraza-Garcia, Penny Lane Centers

Commerce TAY Weekend BBQ Fun

This month at TAY explored different ways to reach clients. This month we were able to introduce our BBQ outreach. The purpose of BBQ 1x/month is to encourage clients to socialize with each other and reach new clients to come to our center. Clients have been voicing how comfortable they are interacting and eating with others out in the open. As staff members, we were able to identify that the client missed family gatherings and socializing with others. I don’t what is it about BBQ, but it brings people together. This year, TAY was also able to celebrate Chinese Year. Clients were interested in learning about Chinese culture and why the New Year for Chinese Culture is February. Clients were able to ask questions, socialize, eat, and learn what Chinese New Year. The plan for TAY is to continue exploring other social activities where clients can come together and learn new cultures that each person celebrates.

-Ricardo Sigala, Penny Lane Centers

Check out some more photos below!

Project Linus

I'm thrilled to share some heartening news with you. Sharon, the Chapter Coordinator for the Santa Clarita/Antelope Valley/Sylmar chapter of Project Linus, has truly gone above and beyond by providing blankets for our Penny Lane community. Our meeting with Sharon was made possible through the assistance of a former PL employee who graciously shared my contact details with her. Over the past year, Sharon has consistently reached out to me, demonstrating her unwavering dedication to supporting our community's needs. Attached is her remarkable story and the origins of Project Linus, which serve as a true source of inspiration. What's even more remarkable is that this initiative is driven by students from the High School where Sharon teaches, at the Academy of the Canyons. We are incredibly fortunate to have such compassionate and generous individuals in our midst. Their kindness and dedication are blessings to our families. It brings me immense joy and privilege to share these beautiful blankets that have been distributed to our families, thanks to their efforts.

Project Linus started its journey in February of 2013 with a mission to provide love, security, warmth, and comfort to children in need who are seriously ill, traumatized, or otherwise in need, through the gifts of new, handmade blankets and Afghans lovingly created by volunteer "basketeers." It aims to offer a rewarding and fulfilling service opportunity for interested individuals and groups in local communities, for the benefit of children.

The chapter's inception dates back to 2010 when Sharon received a blanket while her son was fighting pneumonia in the NICU. That blanket brought comfort not only to her son but also to her. She vowed to pay forward this gesture as often as possible. Introducing the project to her school, the students collectively made and gave away 110 blankets. Sharon and her students harbored a dream to open a chapter in the Santa Clarita Valley, which eventually became a reality in February of 2013. From that point on, the chapter's impact has only grown, leaving an indelible mark on the community.

Project Linus Website: Linus

-Luz Quiros, Penny Lane Centers