Volunteers and community members gathered at Compassion Christian Center in East Bakersfield Saturday for the third Love Your Neighborhood event.
The resource fair offered community members free health services, groceries, family portraits, veteran services, job services, haircuts and more.
The purpose of the event it to, “touch people with the love of Jesus and meeting very simple human needs’,” said Pastor Marisa Banks.
The church partnered with City Serve, a nonprofit offering a network of churches and organizations to provide supplies to those in need.
More than 400 families attended the event. Nearly 300 people left the event with a new pair of shoes, and 60 families received prayer from volunteers.
Event coordinator and Compassion Christian Center member Shalanda Davis-Layton decided to lead the event because there is a need for the services, she said.
“I wanted to strategically layout a plan that would allow every honored guest to feel special by demonstrating the love of God by personal interaction, prayer and providing them with some essential things needed with no strings,” said Davis-Layton.
The event also featured a kid zone for families, mental health services, and singers and praise dancers from Mt. Zion Church.
Volunteers and Compassion Christian Center member Evony Turner said she loves giving back to the community.
On Saturday, she was in charge of guest services. Turner said she helped a single mother who recently lost her job. The woman told Turner the event helped her.
Volunteer Nancy Nix also helped a mother who is struggling with addiction.
Nix said, “It was because of God that she changed.¨
South Kern Sol is a youth-led journalism organization in Kern County. In their stories, youth reporters shine light on health and racial disparities in under-served communities across Kern. For more stories by South Kern Sol, head to southkernsol.org.