Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson joined season ticket holders, staff of the Warriors, Oakland Marriott and Esurance to prepare lunch bag meals to feed the hungry last week at the Oakland Marriott City Center.
The volunteer event, WE G.I.V.E. (Give, Inspire, Volunteer, Educate), was sponsored by the Golden State Warriors and longtime team sponsor Esurance.
The 150-member volunteer group created over 1,300 bagged lunches, to be delivered to Operation Dignity, Bay Area Rescue Mission, East Oakland Community Project, St. Vincent de Paul, and Salvation Army as part of the #HashtagLunchbag movement.
“Hunger is right in front of our eyes every day and the ability to give back is important,” said Thompson after preparing sandwiches and packing boxes for delivery. “Partnering with Esurance through Hashtag LunchBag, we have the ability to help the community, a community that supports my team.”
When Bay Area fashion designer Rebecca Cahua saw the cause of #HashtagLunchBag on social media a year ago, she wanted to get involved and help the hungry.
Now as the San Francisco coordinator of HashtagLunchBag, Cahua said, “Depending on the number of volunteers and resources, we determine the impact we are able to make.”
She says 7,000 meals were distributed last year, averaging 500 to 1,500 per month.
Christopher Lee, senior manager of Brand Partnerships of Esurance, says the long-standing partnership with the Warriors has enabled them to assist the community in a number of ways.
“We have partnered with the Warriors since 2008 and we feed the homeless, clean up parks and empower youth with educational programs,” he said. “WE G.I.V.E. is designed to give us the ability to help a variety of people.”
“As a proud Bay Area brand, we like to support our team,” Lee said. “We’ve had so many great players participate and Klay on several occasions, he’s a great guy.”
After a stellar game on Monday, Jan. 5 where Thompson shined with his slam dunks, leading the victory against Oklahoma City Thunder, 91 to 117, he had a message of inspiration.
“Pursue your dreams, work hard, and enjoy life everyday because life goes by fast. And always give back and help others because it comes back to you in so many great ways,” said Thompson.
Thompson added, “We love Oakland and Oakland loves the Warriors – I just feel like we can do special things with this team and this community, and it’s an exciting time to be in Oakland.”