Who We Are


All members of our community living in poverty attain self-reliance and contribute to society as caring human beings.


With dignity and respect, powered by volunteers, MEND’s mission is to break the bonds of poverty by providing basic human needs and a pathway to self-reliance.

Guiding Values

We affirm that every person, created in the image of God, has innate human dignity and the right to be treated with respect, recognizing the worth of each individual.

We assist clients in the building of their independence and self-esteem, working with them to find ways in which they can help themselves.

Public Support:
We seek community volunteers from all demographic groups and non-governmental funding, ensuring maximum flexibility in meeting the needs of our clients.

Quality Standards:
We continually improve every aspect of our performance, delivering products and services that surpass client expectations.

We always do the right thing ethically, committing ourselves to our clients’ well-being.

Meeting Each Need

In the early 1970’s, MEND – Meet Each Need with Dignity opened its doors in an effort to transform the lives of the neediest residents of the San Fernando Valley – poor children and their struggling families. Starting as a small group of volunteers working from a garage, MEND has grown primarily by word-of-mouth into one of the leanest operating non-profit organizations in existence. More than 94% of the support and donations received by MEND, now the largest poverty agency in the Valley, provides emergency food, clothing, medical, vision and dental care, job skills training and job placement assistance, English as a Second Language classes, youth activities, and a Christmas program. In 2015, we received over 37,000 client visits per month.

People Helping People

Each month, more than 16,600 hours are donated by volunteers from a broad range of backgrounds and income levels; all joining together to act as people helping people. Each person plays a vital role in meeting the mission of MEND. From the distribution of food, clothing to assistance in job training and placement, our volunteers give MEND life.

MEND’s Unique Characteristics

  • 99% volunteer driven
  • Almost entirely privately funded – MEND solicits no government grants
  • Low overhead costs (less than 6%)
  • Public relations and fundraising work done mostly by volunteers
  • Seeks to develop self-reliance among recipients
  • Staff is hired only when programs grow too large for volunteers to handle
  • Sells no items or services — Small donations are accepted, based on the recipient’s ability to pay


MEND is a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization. Tax ID #23-7306337