Monday, October 14, 2013


Friday, October 11, 2013 was the grand opening of the new Shoe Palace Workshop at the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, Council of Los Angeles' administrative offices and thrift store in Los Angeles. The computer workshop will allow children and adults to receive free tutoring, GED and ESL classes, as well as an education on internet use and resume creation on the workshop's 15 computers. 100 guests attended, including Catholic school students; Los Angeles Police Department leadership; Councilmember Tom LaBonge; Jan Perry, interim leader of the City of Los Angeles Economic Development Department; and the owners of Shoe Palace.

"We love the Society of St. Vincent de Paul," said Shoe Palace Vice President John Mersho, "We always want to be about helping our community." The workshop was made possible by grants from Shoe Palace and the Riordan Foundation. Shoe Palace Marketing Manager Lacey Flynn said the kids using the workshop would get free shoes from Shoe Palace as an incentive for academic achievement. 

Society of St. Vincent de Paul, Council of Los Angeles' Executive Director David Fields pointed out that it was Society employee Jorge Alvarez who unofficially started the workshop when he asked Society leadership for a computer room, because he does not own a computer. Fields is excited by the possibilities of the workshop, pointing out that Society employee Carolyn Sanchez recently completed requirements for her GED. "We promoted her, and gave her a 10% raise!" Fields said.
Photos: (Top) Sacred Heart Catholic High School students, Los Angeles Police Department leadership, Shoe Palace leadership and owners, and Society leadership at the workshop grand opening. (Bottom) Councilmember Tom LaBonge presents Society director of operations Jim Bibb and executive director David Fields with a certificate lauding the Society for the workshop.

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