Despite the bizarre use of the Village People song about the “YMCA” at Trump rallies, the actual organization couldn’t be further away from his ethos. In Los Angeles, the YMCA supports under-served communities in many ways. Since the pandemic, they’ve provided over 1 million meals to families and homebound seniors, as well as over 25,000 hours of free child care to emergency responders and essential workers. And there’s more: showers for the homeless, blood drives, and no-cost flu shots, to name a few.

The organization’s annual MLK breakfast honors L.A. figures who are also helping the community. Going virtually this year due to COVID-19, with 2021 honorees include Dave Roberts (manager of the LA Dodgers) who will receive the Brotherhood Award and Sharon Robinson (Vice-Chair of the Jackie Robinson Foundation) presented with the Human Dignity Award. Stedman Graham, (CEO of S. Graham and Associates and Oprah Winfrey’s longtime partner) will provide the keynote speech for the online event.

“Celebrating the life and legacy of Dr. King reflects our unwavering commitment to the fight for equality,” said Nichole Whiteman, CEO of the Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation, in the event press release. “While we have made tremendous strides, our nation operates as two Americas, one where Black people and other marginalized groups are denied the full liberties under the constitution. As we emerge from a year that has stretched our physical and emotional limits, we will continue the fight thanks to leaders like Dave Roberts and Sharon Robinson who fearlessly advocate in charting the path ahead.”
The annual L.A. tradition will be streamed live for the public from the Westin Bonaventure Hotel & Suites in downtown and it marks the 50th annual celebration of Dr. King and his fight for social justice and equality.  Fri., Jan. 15, 9 a.m. PST. Register for free here.

Advertising disclosure: We may receive compensation for some of the links in our stories. Thank you for supporting LA Weekly and our advertisers.