Rebecca Huang of San Gabriel is a typical busy high school senior, except that along with the hours she spends on school work, Huang also volunteers extensively for her community. Her current effort is aimed at raising money for the Bad Weather Shelter, which since 1986 has provided homeless people in Pasadena a meal and a warm place to sleep in harsh weather.
Huang said her dad, who works for the City of Pasadena, told her about the shelter.
“I had never known that such a program for the homeless existed, but thought it sounded like an excellent and essential one,” she said. “But my dad also informed me that due to budget cuts, the city was not going to be able to fund the shelter after this year.”
Other funding had decreased as well, threatening the very existence of the program.
So Huang, 18, helped launch The Friends of the Bad Weather Shelter last November. It is an effort to get 100 Pasadena businesses to each donate $600 a year to help keep the program going. She has put in countless hours soliciting businesses and the public for donations. She has made posters explaining how people can help, posting them in 20 different bus shelter stations. She worked with local newspapers to publicize the campaign and also worked with the designer of the Ecumenical Council of Pasadena Area Churches website (ecpac.net) to accept online credit card donations.
Huang and the group have raised $18,000 so far.
While most high school seniors are stressed out by college applications, Huang worries about the people in her community who aren’t as privileged as she is. She saw a way she could help, and never looked back.