This Laundry Truck Is Serving The Unhoused In The Spirit Of Community

A warm place to sleep, basic hygienic products, clean clothes — these are often things we take for granted. But for our neighbors, living without these basic human dignities, something as simple as laundered clothes to wear can make all the difference.

Jodie Dolan knows a little something about clothing making people feel seen. She’s the founder of DOLAN clothing company. And when she set out to help members of the unhoused community, one need came up again and again: People didn’t have a place to do laundry. Springing into action, Dolan created The Laundry Truck LA, a mobile service that provides free laundry service to anyone who asks for it. The action is simple; the impact is massive.

“For us, it’s about changing the stigma,” Dolan says. “We help people be seen, and we help them feel like their best selves.”

Watching Dolan and their clients speak, it’s hard not to be struck by how small gestures can make a huge difference. From job interviews to going into a grocery store, clean clothes change the way people look at you. For many unhoused individuals, it’s a chance to feel validated by others and regain confidence.

We’ve all heard the quote, “be the change you wish to see in the world,” but believing in a mantra and going out and doing something about it can be very different things. Which is why we’re inspired by people like Jodie Dolan — who cross the threshold from “feeling bad” to “showing up.”

Because when you show up to help, lives change. And it can all start with something as simple as a load of laundry.