The Little Tokyo Service Center Community Development Corporation (CDC) has received a commitment for $300,000 as part of Los Angeles County’s COVID-19 Community Equity Fund, it was announced Dec. 2 by County Board of Supervisors Chair Pro Tem Hilda L. Solis.
The LTSC-CDC joins 50 other community-based organizations (CBOs) from throughout the county called upon to help raise awareness and slow the spread of COVID-19 in communities disproportionately impacted by the virus. The funding will provide a range of services, including outreach, education, case investigation, and contact tracing as well as help individuals connect with health and social services.
“Little Tokyo Service Center is very appreciative of the County of Los Angeles and Community Partners to have received this grant, along with our partners — Southeast Asian Community Alliance in Chinatown, and Los Angeles Community Action Network in Skid Row,” stated Erich Nakano, LTSC executive director.
“Since March, LTSC has been reaching out to vulnerable populations we work with — Japanese- and Korean-speaking seniors and families; small businesses in Little Tokyo and beyond; Latino and Asian residents in our affordable housing; and people we serve in L.A. and in the South Bay.”
According to Nakano, LTSC has conducted wellness check-ins and provided information about how to stay safe and apply for benefits, grants, and loans. “We are grateful that these new funds will support this work and enable us to expand our reach and help more people in need.”
The County Department of Health launched the Equity Fund program after recognizing that COVID-related messaging (how to stay safe, locate testing, public health orders, and what to do if the test is positive) was not adequately reaching minority and immigrant communities. The goal is to reduce the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 in the county by providing community organizations with funding, training, and technical assistance.
As part of the funding, LTSC-CDC will be focusing on outreach and engagement. Organizations were selected because of their experience in providing culturally and linguistically appropriate services in historically underserved communities.
“This investment recognizes the need to support new and existing community-centered interventions to combat these injustices and take action to reduce the inequities we are seeing in our communities.” said Barbara Ferrer, PhD, MPH, MEd, director of public health.
The Community Equity Fund is a joint effort by the L.A. County Department of Health Services and Department of Public Health in partnership with Community Partners, a nonprofit organization that will coordinate with the CBOs.