LOS ANGELES -- High school seniors missing out on prom due to COVID-19 are being surprised with a 'Prom Party in a Box.'
LAPD's Southwest Bureau and Building Blue Bridges (B3), a program designed to improve relationships between youth and law enforcement, teamed up to deliver the surprises to graduates in South Los Angeles.
The first Prom Party in a Box recipient, Waynita Long, a graduate of Dorsey High School, was overwhelmed by the scale of the gesture.
"I knew it was coming, but I didn't think it was going to be that big. It was so much more," Long said.
"LAPD used every resource they had, including a helicopter flyover. It was just unbelievable," said Daphne Bradford, founder of the non-profit organizations "Mother Of Many" and "Building Blue Bridges" (B3). She came up with Prom Party in a Box after seeing the disappointment in many of the students in her programs over missing their big night.
"A lot of the kids are at home and the anxiety is really settling in," said Bradford.
The festive drop-offs include party favors, food and a gathering of friends and community members.
"Even from a distance, it felt real," said Long. "We took pictures. It felt like I had time to have fun, see my family, see my friends, see my coaches who came."
"They're going to remember this for the rest of their lives," Bradford said.
"Building Blue Bridges" has set up a GoFundMe page to help support further 2020 Prom Party in a Box drop-offs.