On Tuesday, January 19, 2016 in the Tom Bradley room at Los Angeles City Hall, 25 members of the Los Angeles community were honored for their foundational work to make a positive impact in our city.
PLEASE MEET A 2016 IMPACT-MAKER TO WATCH:
...is heavily involved in helping homeless individuals get the services they need. Over the years, he has learned how to navigate the process with government agencies, faith based organizations and non-profit groups to expedite requests. He is always looking for ways to improve the quality of life for those in need in the San Fernando Valley.
— Paul Krekorian, LA City Council District 2
Luis Oliart has been the volunteer director of the North Hollywood Interfaith Food Pantry (NHIFP) for the past 7 years. His efforts have provided emergency food annually to approximately 18,000 veterans, families, seniors, and those living below the poverty line. Under his leadership, the Interfaith Pantry has increased its coalition by 50%. and is currently made up of 15 diverse religious congregations and approximately 30 local schools, all who work towards providing food to the community in need. By working with Councilman Krekorian and the SPA 2 Homeless Coalition, Luis has been able to utilize an existing infrastructure of volunteer “navigators” who have relationships with the homeless community, helping them get the appropriate social services they need. Further, Luis has implemented a structure originating at the pantry, which helps provide section 8 affordable housing to the pantry’s clientele. He’s created partnerships with Cal Fresh, VA, Food Forward and has built a Community Garden program which provides fresh fruit and produce to the pantry’s food supply. Under his tutelage, the pantry has been integrated into several local elementary and high schools in going beyond community service, and making volunteering a part of the school curriculum. The Benevolent Association has recognized the volunteer work of Luis and the NHIFP and has provided an intern who works primarily on creating Social Justice in the community. When he’s not busy utilizing his “army of goodness,” Luis has a thriving career as a musician - teaching, producing, recording and performing in the community he cares so much about, and beyond. He is humbled and honored by this distinction.