Hundreds of homeless and poor children and their families began Easter weekend with a traditional service at the Fred Jordan Mission on skid row.
The service was to be followed by a barbecue brunch, face painting, an ice cream social and other holiday activities. Mission staff and and a team of volunteers were assisting with the service and brunch.
Hundreds of Easter baskets were filled for the event. One young volunteer made more than 1,000 scarves and stuffed bunnies to give out to mothers and children.
“It’s just beautiful,” said mission director Peter Jordan, who said he was expecting more than 2,000 people to turn out Saturday.
Such annual events underscore the ongoing effects of the troubled economy, Jordan said. People who used to volunteer to help this Easter event are now coming in for meals, he said.
“It’s been a real struggle,” he said. “But people have come together and pulled together, and we’re here for the community.”
The mission’s Easter activities were to continue until 2 p.m. Saturday.