Young Nak Celebration ChurchConnect, serve, extend. Those three words sum up the goals of the Young Nak Celebration Church. Connect people, serve the community and extend faith and love to all.

For the last three years, the Widows, Orphans & Disabled Firemen’s Fund has been chosen by the church’s YNOT Foundation as a benefactor of this outpouring of support. Without the generosity of donors such as the Young Nak Church, the charity simply could not run.

The Young Nak Church has been in the heart of its Los Angeles neighborhood for more than 30 years. Its members believe in bringing people into their faith as much as they do sending people out and inspiring generosity and kindness in others. A true mission-based community, they purposefully look beyond their church to service those most in need, to bring them help in any way — be it physically, mentally, emotionally or spiritually.

It was this focus, which inspired their charitable organization, the Young Nak Outreach and Transformation (YNOT) Foundation. Established in 2008, the foundation looks to empower those in need who cannot help themselves, to teach them how to transform their lives through community development, social justice, economic support and outreach programs. In essence, YNOT was created to help the community help itself.

One of its most exciting philanthropic events is the Sharing Festival, an annual fundraiser hosted in collaboration with other local agencies to help raise money for public and non-profit organizations that strive to help the community. During these difficult financial times, government funding is limited and private contributors are no longer able to give on substantial levels. Public and non-profit organizations are finding it harder to keep going and deliver much-needed services. The Sharing Festival, which is put together by the church’s own members, features more than 40 booths of food and merchandise. The foundation says 100% of the proceeds are given to these benefiting organizations.

To learn more about the Young Nak Celebration Church and the YNOT Foundation, please visit ynccla.org.

By Emily Shuttleworth