LOS ANGELES — For the last three years, Keith Kirkwood and Manna Dabholkar’s nonprofit Gift Global Initiative has helped children in Los Angeles, but now the team is bringing their help far away.
“We’re getting ready to bring these medical supplies to Beirut, Lebanon,” Kirkwood said.
After the deadly blast in Beirut a few weeks ago, Kirkwood said the nonprofit has been inundated with requests for help on social media.
The calls for help came from people who knew they were a local charity with global reach: with Dabholkar’s past work with the American Red Cross and Kirkwood’s previous work in politics.
Their shared love of children inspired them to help. “A fraction of the city has been destroyed,” Kirkwood said.
Now Kirkwood and his team are heading to Beirut to bring aid to the children’s hospitals that have been destroyed.
Most of the medical aid and food and water has already been shipped to Beirut via cargo plane, but the team will bring N95 masks, face shields, and hand sanitizer.
“The kids from the hospitals that were destroyed were transferred over to the hospitals we’re working with, they’re running super low on supplies," Dabholkar said. "Once we get there, we’re going to distribute medical supplies to the hospitals."
The Gift Global team won’t just deliver humanitarian aid and help search and rescue efforts, they want to truly see the need out there.
Then, the group will head back to L.A. to continue helping. While this disaster happened across the world, Kirkwood and Dabholkar know their nonprofit and L.A. support system have a lot to offer.
This team has help to give, and they’re willing to go a long way to give it.