Earvin “Magic” Johnson, Cookie Johnson, Gigi Johnson, and Andre Johnson at Holiday Hope community giveaway event. (Denver Mackey/L.A. Sentinel)


On Saturday November 18, Earvin “Magic” Johnson, Cookie Johnson and the Magic Johnson Foundation hosted Holiday Hope, a community giveaway event serving over 800 families across Inglewood and the Los Angeles area.

“Holiday Hope is an event near and dear to the Johnson family, designed to ensure local community members have the resources necessary to celebrate the upcoming holidays, thanks in part to the contributions of corporate partners like the Los Angeles Football Club, the Los Angeles Lakers, the Los Angeles Dodgers, Common Spirit Foundation and many others,” said the Magic Johnson Foundation.

Youth volunteers participate in Holiday Hope community event. (Kasey Stokes)

The event took place at Faithful Central Bible Church where Senior Pastor Dr. John-Paul C. Foster opened the campus to the community with open arms, cultivating an environment of joy and service.

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Expressing how meaningful the event was to Faithful Central, Pastor Foster said, “It’s an absolute honor to partner with the Magic Johnson Foundation. Our vision and mission at Faithful Central Bible Church are to impact the lives of families and communities.

“To go out and be an extension of God’s hand, extending love, support, and resources to the community, is phenomenal,” said Foster.

“I can’t wait to see the smiles on the kids’ faces because giving back is what it is all about. It gives hope and displays what it means to love your neighbor.”

A multitude of volunteers preparing to serve over 800 families across the Inglewood and Los Angeles area. (Denver Mackey/L.A. Sentinel)

Families that participated in the event received a 25-pound box shelf-stable food, a 15-pound box of personal care items and a 5-pound box of AVON products provided by Feed the Children. Along with these boxes, families also received toys, protein snacks, hams, cases of water, coats, eyewear, children’s books, and canned food from more sponsors of the event, Power Crunch, Herbalife, Mattel, and One Warm Coats.

Nasayah Martinez, a Holiday Hope recipient, described the blessing that the event was to her and family.

“This year has been very hard for me and my family, I have five children and we’ve been struggling and had a lot of financial issues, so this is very meaningful to me,” said Martinez.

Sponsors ensured families had sufficient items to have a nutritious holiday meal this Thanksgiving. (Denver Mackey/L.A. Sentinel)

“This gives us a chance to be able to eat a decent meal. We love Mr. Johnson.  He’s always out here helping the community and he goes all out!”

While Magic Johnson Foundation was first established in 1991 as an organization focused on HIV/AIDS education and prevention programs, it has expanded its scope of support nationwide within underserved communities by addressing health, education and social needs issues. The Johnson’s hosted their first Holiday Hope event in 2014 in Detroit, Flint, and Lansing, Michigan, along with countless other charity events throughout the country.

These events would not have been possible without the leadership of Shane Jenkins, director of Community Relations at Magic Johnson Foundation, who organized another unforgettable Holiday Hope event in Inglewood.

Cookie Johnson and Pastor John-Paul C. Foster distributing boxes to the community. (Denver Mackey/L.A. Sentinel)

“Cookie and I feel so incredibly thankful that we can be a blessing to so many families during the holiday season through our Holiday Hope event in Inglewood this year,” said Earvin “Magic” Johnson.

“We get so much joy seeing the excitement on everyone’s face when they receive the food, clothing and the multitude of items that will be provided by the Magic Johnson Foundation and our wonderful partners.”

“It’s overwhelming and its heartwarming, there are organizations here that helped us, so it’s embedded in us to give back because we know what it’s like to be on the receiving end,” shared Mrs. Johnson.

Andre Johnson, oldest son of the Johnsons, also noted, “It’s important to be around other people and spread joy and love.  That’s what Thanksgiving is all about.”

For over three decades, MJF has prioritized the pillars of health and wellness, education, scholarships, and community programs to address health and social concerns that threaten all disadvantaged communities.
To learn more about the Magic Johnson Foundation and future events, visit https://magicjohnson.com/.


Earvin “Magic” Johnson loading up vehicles during Holiday Hope. (Feed the Children)
Earvin “Magic” Johnson with LA Rams mascot, Rampage. (Feed the Children)
Cookie Johnson with LA Rams cheerleaders at Holiday Hope. (Denver Mackey/L.A. Sentinel)