Though food trends come and go, one of the biggest sweeping changes in people’s awareness of food has been the increase in veganism.
According to an article in Forbes, people who identified as vegan increased 600% between 2014 and 2017.
Though some people have mixed feelings about the trend, it seems clear that it’s not going anywhere and that there are plenty of reasons, from personal health to the environment, to get behind it. Still, there have been debates that veganism is somehow not accessible to everyone or elitist.
As it turns out, some people are looking to change that perception by closing the gap.
At least, that’s the case for Will Smith’s son Jaden Smith.
As many may know, Jaden is an actor, musician and artist who follows a vegan lifestyle himself. Jaden also lives in Los Angeles, California, which has an extreme issue with homelessness, particularly in the downtown Skid Row area.
Because people who are poor or homeless often have some of the worst health outcomes, and because those are related to diet, Jaden decided to help out in an innovative way.
He decided to open up a free vegan food truck for the homeless right near Skid Row.
Jaden shared photos of the truck on his Instagram and explained his reasoning behind the decision.
The post in question was a video of a food truck handing out free bag after free bag of food to anyone in the area who wanted one. The caption read:
“The @ILoveYouRestaurant Is A Movement That Is All About Giving People What They Deserve, Healthy, Vegan Food For Free. Today We Launched Our First One Day Food Truck Pop-Up in Downtown LA. Keep A Look Out Because This Is The First Of Many #JADENinc”
So far, his video has been viewed on Instagram some four million times.
Though homelessness is a serious issue in many major cities, LA’s Skid Row is one of the worst situations in the country.
According to statistics from the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce, the population of the Skid Row district ranges from 8,000 to 11,000 people.
Of those people, there is a stable homeless population of roughly 5,000 to 8,000 people, according to Unilad. Although there are definitely other services to help provide housing and food for homeless residents in the city, there’s still a shortage and any extra help is hugely appreciated.
And needless to say, there aren’t many people who are doing outreach in the way that Jaden has done it here!
No matter what people may think of veganism as a trend or Jaden as a person, it’s clear that he’s doing a lot of good in Los Angeles!
While we tend to think of celebrities as existing only in their own little bubbles and not interacting with the rest of us, stories like this one prove that that’s not always true. If you’re able to get power and financial success, the only right thing to do is to use your platform to reach back out and help other people. Fortunately, people like Jaden Smith are showing a great example of how to do that.
Thanks for everything you’ve been doing, Jaden!
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