The End of Summer at Penny Lane Centers

September 6, 2023

MIP Meet & Greet Event in August

This was a celebration of Penny Lane Centers Mentored Internship Program (MIP) successes and continued provision of internship/practicum opportunities for graduate students from universities in Los Angeles County.  Penny Lane Centers has a 20+ year history of providing supportive educational opportunities through on-site provision of services to children and families.  In April 2022 we were awarded 3 contracts to offer not only paid internships but also to be able to pay our wonderful hardworking staff to mentor and supervise the interns.  Since April 2022 we have had 22 interns come to PLC through the MIP program and we have hired 14 of these interns.  By September 2023 we will have welcomed another 24 interns to learn, grow and serve our communities through their internships.

At this celebration we had the opportunity to meet with each other in person and get to know more about our dedicated MIP Interns, Mentors (Practicum Instructors) and Supervisors that make this program a success.  I would like to thank the leadership of Penny Lane for supporting this program and participating in this event.  Judy Sandino was our MC, Wendy Carpenter was our guest speaker and to Nydia Barakat for planning this event.  

Thank you to all!

-Theresa Culver, Penny Lane Centers

Check out some more photos below!

Commerce TAY Drop-in Center Summer BBQ

On 8/19/23 the Penny Lane TAY Drop-in Center in Commerce had a Summer BBQ event.  But this time it was unique as this time the TAY staff were not the ones in charge of the grilling and activities. This event was planned and implemented by the Young Adult Service Planning Team that includes 5 current Penny Lane TAY clients.  This group of amazing young people was made possible through a private grant that Penny Lane received in partnership with the Housing Justice Collective and Lensco.  The team had been discussing more outreach and on-site events and they started by planning and creating a great BBQ event open to all TAY clients.

The group began the planning process in their regular weekly sessions and ran through ideas with their Penny Lane TAY staff facilitator.  They made a plan to each gain their California Food Handler’s permit so they could officially host a food event.  They then developed a menu offering beef hot dogs, bacon-wrapped hot dogs, and vegan hot dogs.  They committed to being inclusive of dietary restrictions and preferences and took extra precautions to ensure that the vegan hog dogs did not ever come into contact with the meat products.   They also developed fun games for TAY participants – some of whom have young children.  They really wanted to ensure that the TAY staff did not have to worry about jumping in to help during the event and carefully planned every detail.

On the day of the event, the young adult team sprung into work and began preparing the food like a well-oiled machine.  They set up the food and condiment stations and made sure all attendees got their food quickly and that no one left hungry.  This event brought all of the TAY attendees closer and there were so many great interactions.  TAY staff got to let the youth team members take charge, enjoy their successes while overcoming any challenges and ultimately building self-esteem and community.  

The youth team knocked it out of the park and already began planning the next events.  Future events include meeting with local elected officials, tabling at resource events, and of course more cookouts!  The team meets every Friday in Commerce from 2pm-4pm and welcome Penny Lane collaborators to sit in!

-Nambryan Do, Penny Lane Centers

Check out some more photos below!

Antelope Valley CalWORKs Step Up Your Prep Job Workshop

Penny Lane’s CalWORKs program in the Antelope Valley had its first in-person community event focusing on employment.  It was truly a success.

“Step Up Your Job Prep” Workshop aimed to help clients and individuals in the community members obtain help with job readiness and provide tools to improve interviewing skills. We also offered interview attire for those who were in need. Our Employment Specialists team: Aly Humphrey, Cristina Solis, and Cynthia Barajas, diligently put this workshop together to prepare individuals on how to approach hiring managers at a job fair.  They focused on various aspects such as Do’s and Don’ts relating to dress attire for interviews, resume building tips and how to make an impression with the hiring manager in less than 5 minutes.

Our Employment Specialist team collaborates with our clients to help remove barriers to employment and provide positive tools such as planning and mock interviews. Our program heavily revolves around networking and establishing a positive relationship with hiring managers to empower clients and create opportunities for success.  

Here is a helpful tool from one of our clients who obtained employment:  
“Staying focused on my good qualities made me successful in every aspect of my life. The advice I would give others is to focus on the positive and stay true to yourself.”

-Jessica Rojas, Penny Lane Centers

Check out some more photos below!

Representatives from Congressman Robert Garcia’s Office Visit Our Commerce Family Center

Thank you to the representatives from Congressman Robert Garcia’s office for touring our Commerce Family Center this past August.  It is so great having community members visit with some of the staff, parents and youth we support daily. So many of our clients were excited for this opportunity.

The representatives were very impressed with our family center and would like to return for future meetings with our Young Adult Group, support our yearly TAYstock event, and other community outreach events that focus around the services Penny Lane provides.  They also want to support Penny Lane Centers clients by writing letters of support should we put in for a grant in this district. We are excited about this collaboration and what is to come in the future!

-Bryan Do, Penny Lane Centers

Check out some more photos of the visit below!!