An Orange Country Couple Invites Local Homeless to Their Dinner Table

“It’s about dignity and human connection.”

Five years ago, Lambert and Line Lo of Santa Ana began inviting homeless members of their community to dinner. They first held these dinners at churches and businesses before opening up their home. Now others are following their example and bringing people together for a five-course meal and conversation.

According to the Los Angeles Times, the name the couple gave the effort expresses how they want the dinners to feel. “When you think of a king, you think of abundance and the finest and royalty,” says Lambert Lo. “We want everyone at the King’s Table to be treated like royalty.”

The staff at the meal attended by the Times writer was entirely volunteer, as was the chef, who had donated the food. She recounts meeting some of the guests on her visit:

“I had met Brian Whitmore, who told me he’d been in the shelter three weeks after ‘self-destruction’ in the form of drinking had cost him the job he’d held for 17 years as an Albertsons grocery clerk. And David Foster, 61, who said he’d had a good career for 25 years in medical billing, collection and coding before losing his job four years ago because of pain that made it necessary for him to take a lot of breaks, which was belatedly diagnosed as spinal stenosis. Reeta Johnson, 47, had lived on a Fullerton bench for more than four years before she got to the shelter.

“When it comes to being homeless, it’s about not having support,” she told me. She said she’d had very little from anyone her whole life.”

You can read more about these dinners and the shared experience here.