In January 2018, city officials from Anaheim, Santa Ana, and Orange were faced with a dilemma. The riverbed that runs along each of their respective communities had become a destination for more than 200 homeless men, women, and children who, with no other alternatives, called it home. The debate about whether Orange County has criminalized homelessness is still a rather hot topic that continues to be discussed during town hall meetings, planning commissions, and local elections, but few people are committed to lending a hand towards solving the problem.
Scattered among historic buildings and city-owned vacant lots of Santa Ana, many have found refuge while the city promises to combat the lack of available housing. For some, the opportunity to get back on their feet is the only reason they made their way to our downtown area. “I heard there were shelters available for us” said one man who spent several weeks sleeping on the street just steps away from Santa Ana’s Artists Village.
New Generation, a dispensary that opened in October 2016, has been doing their part to help with this very serious issue. “Ever since the City of Santa Ana stepped up and supported the cannabis community, we have felt the importance of stepping up for our community of Santa Ana,” said Justin Shively, who owns the popular dispensary. “That’s why we run so many charity events year ’round!”
Twice a year, New Generation hosts a clothing drive that will benefit the people currently faced with few opportunities. From now until June 14, you can bring new and unused shorts and/or new packs of socks to their location on Segerstom Avenue in Santa Ana. On June 15, New Generation will hand out all the donations (along with cases of water) to the men and women at the Santa Ana homeless shelter.
Together, we can help those truly in need and end the tired stereotype that stoners are lazy. Let’s get out there!
3700 W. Segerstrom Ave., Suite A
Santa Ana, CA 92704
7 a.m.-10 p.m.