LOS ANGELES, CALIF. — 116 years ago this week, Biola University was founded in downtown Los Angeles. On Wednesday, Biola students served the city just a mile from Biola’s original campus at Hope and 6th St. In partnership with the Dream Center, Biola students served the homeless community at MacArthur Park. With Biola’s mission in mind to prepare men and women to impact the world for Jesus Christ, a group of Biola volunteers in collaboration with the Biola office of Student Enrichment and Intercultural Development (SEID) distributed meals to those experiencing food insecurity on February 21.

“(As) SEID prepared to celebrate Biola’s 116th birthday, we thought, ‘what greater way to celebrate than to go back to our historic roots and serve others in Los Angeles?’” said Carla Logie, assistant director of SEID at Biola.

Providing support through community outreach and resource programs, the Dream Center in Los Angeles serves as a resource center for those in need. According to their website, they aim “to empower lives and communities through the transforming love of Christ; body, soul and spirit,” providing support to those affected by homelessness, hunger and lack of education.

The Biola volunteers helped prepare hot dogs and beverages to pass out to the people living at MacArthur Park and led them in prayer throughout the morning before heading out. The team was immediately recognized by the park’s community and the Biola team got to start conversations, hear their stories and pray over them.

“The goal is to come out here and be a presence that is consistent,” said one of the members there from the Dream Center leadership school. “We like to come out and just love on them and help them to see that, we see them, and that above that God sees them.”

Alongside trying to make connections and build relationships with the people there, the Dream Center team hands out flyers. These contained resources for Dream Center events, rehabilitation programs, and church information to any who wanted to know more or asked for help. There was always an open invitation to join the team at church.

With its original campus established in Downtown Los Angeles in 1908, Biola aims to prepare students to, “demonstrate the obedience of faith in service to others through… hearts of compassion and acts of courage” by giving back to their community, and this time alongside the Dream Team.

Founded in 1908, Biola is committed to the mission of biblically centered education, scholarship and service — equipping men and women in mind and character to impact the world for the Lord Jesus Christ. With more than 5,000 students at its Southern California campus and around the world, Biola’s eight schools offer more than 150 academic programs at the bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral levels. Recognized as the most comprehensive Christian university, ranked highest in North America for operationalizing its mission (OCIG) and ranked as one of the “Best National Universities” by U.S. News and World Report, Biola offers its students a premier educational and co-curricular experience. For more information, visit biola.edu or call (562) 777-4061.