Polo’s Pantry: Firing up activism to combat food injustice

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Melissa Acedera started volunteering her time by doing outreach work on Skid Row and now operates Polo’s Pantry, a mobile food distribution program, and Home-y Made Meals, which connects a network of cooks and drivers to communities in need. Photo by Melissa Acedura.

Homelessness is an issue that persists in Los Angeles. While many avert their eyes, others roll up their sleeves to help, like Melissa Acedera. As the founder and director of Polo’s Pantry, she continues to extend her reach with a mobile food pantry, which organizes around specific community needs. On Skid Row, meals are distributed as most unhoused people there aren’t equipped to cook, while in other areas, donations include pallets of grocery items. At the onset of the pandemic, she co-founded Home-y Made Meals, a network of 1,000 volunteers who have delivered over 8,000 meals to those in need.

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Evan Kleiman