About The Friends

We are a nonprofit organization that supports educational, recreational, and cultural programs at EXPO Center, a City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks facility that serves at-risk youth, families and seniors in one of the most densely populated and economically challenged communities in Los Angeles. EXPO Center hosts over 2.3 million visits annually.

Motivated by the economic and social challenges gripping EXPO Center’s neighborhood, and inspired by the potential to effectively empower change, The Friends of EXPO Center’s mission is to assist at-risk youth and their families, and to ultimately position EXPO Center as a vital community resource and national model of youth development, through fundraising and advocacy.

What We Support

Youth Orchestra Los Angeles ([email protected])

The Friends offer a classical music program, in partnership with Harmony Project and the LA Philharmonic. We provide funding, college support, tutoring, classrooms and rehearsal space with 28-hours of lesson time for students at the EXPO Center in an extraordinary program that’s grown from 40 to over 325 children per week.

Kids in Sports @ EXPO Center

Over 6,000 children and teens participate each year in affordable, high-quality volleyball, basketball, soccer, and t-ball programs. Throughout the year EXPO Center offers multiple seasons of league play giving local girls and boys the opportunity to be part of a supportive team, build self-confidence and sportsmanship, and stay physically active. Free sports clinics are held throughout the year to help local youth learn new sports and develop their athletic skills.

Cyber Seniors

For more than 13 years we’ve been training over 2,300 of LA’s seniors to be more connected and computer literate. Over 15 weeks, we offer 4 levels of once weekly, bi-lingual training with free internet access at EXPO Center.

Mambo Mania & Yoga Suave

Our programs promote the health and well-being of south LA’s senior community. Mambo Mania is a fun, full-body workout to Latin rhythms for active seniors. After an hour of working out, we offer soft Latin music, yoga, breathing and light meditation in Yoga Suave. Over 85 seniors participate in these fitness classes per week.

Summer Campership Program

The Friends give economically disadvantaged neighborhood children the opportunity to attend EXPO Center’s exciting day camp, where they swim, play soccer and basketball, make arts and crafts, explore in our computer lab, and play music. Over 4,500 children attend EXPO Center’s Camp programs.

Learn to Swim

To date over 40,000 children have learned life-saving water skills through programs we fund at EXPO Center. During ten one-hour swim classes kids gain confidence and self-esteem in the water with many continuing on to become certified lifeguards.

Afterschool Enrichment for Elementary Students

Our “Walk Crew” and program funded vans bring children ages 5-11 in the Exposition Park area to EXPO Center for engaging academic and recreational activities during critical afterschool hours. Each week, 125 children attend EXPO Center’s afterschool program.

Teen Leadership Program

Our EXPO Computer Clubhouse and Youth FX Urban Media Program are the center of our Teen Leadership Program. More than 250 young people aged 11-17 work with adult mentors to explore their creativity and strengthen technical skills.


Teen Leadership Culmination Dinner

The EXPO Center Teen Leadership Culmination dinner took place on Monday, March 12. Our special guest and Board Member, Councilman Curren Price, helped celebrate the graduation of 120 teens from this eight-week program. Teens learn critical college and employment readiness skills such as writing a resume, executing a job search, completing an application, interviewing skills, …

Teen Leadership: Strengths and Goals

The EXPO Center Teen Leadership Program motivates and prepares teens for work readiness, career development, and entrepreneurship through hands-on experiences and vocational life skills development. We recently sat down with three members of the current cohort and spoke with them about their strengths, goals, and what leadership means to them. #futureleaders


YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE IN THE LIFE OF A CHILD TODAY!  Support our 24th Annual Golf Tournament!


EXPO Center is keeping our doors open during this COVID-19 crisis. Your support helps EXPO Center continue providing a safe and healthy environment for the children of essential workers and families in South Los Angeles. Every day since the start of this pandemic, EXPO Center has continued to meet the immediate needs of our community Adapting our programming to follow the safety guidelines of the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Health, EXPO Center is providing FREE:

  • Daily childcare and meals for the families of essential workers.
  • Recreational play and creative arts for local children with our “Play LA: Playing It Safe” on-site afterschool program.
  • Virtual programming for teens through our “Safer at Home Computer Clubhouse.”
  • On-site classrooms with virtual access to LAUSD teachers for children who can’t stay home alone during the school day.

Help keep our children safe, supported, and healthy!



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Donation Total: $350 One Time