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2019 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Leyna Nguyens Love Across the Ocean

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Human Services

Mission: To provide a safe learning environment for children and help them and their families with basic human needs.

Target demographics: impoverished children and their families, and refugees

Geographic areas served: Southern California, Vietnam, other countries

Programs: construction of schools, sponsorship of children, humanitarian relief, medical missions, gifting of farm animals

Community Stories

37 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Russ N.

Donor

Rating: 5

I feel so blessed to be a part of the Love Across The Ocean (LATO) "family". By this, I mean to say that not only does LATO's founder, Leyna Nguyen, dedicate much of her time to running and raising funds for her non-profit charity through creative and fun fundraising events, but she truly makes you feel warm and welcome, as part of the wonderful group of people that so willingly and generously donate funds to help Leyna in her efforts to bring relief, food, toys, books, medical aid and much more to her homeland people in need, in Vietnam. I have met so many wonderful people by getting involved in some of the great fundraising events that Leyna puts on for LATO. I first met Leyna, after reaching out on social media, due to having become a follower of hers through her incredible Emmy winning work on CBS news for local KCAL9 NEWS in Los Angeles. Little did I know that she would invite me to be a judge at one of her LATO fundraising events, which was a karaoke contest. As one in the music and film industry, I guess Leyna felt I was qualified to judge the many contestants who came out to support LATO and sing their hearts out. It was at this event that I also met Denny Hooten, Leyna's significant other and right hand guy with the LATO efforts. I was so enamored with this fun group and the wonderful things they were doing, that now, a year and half later, I am proud to call Leyna and Denny my friends and as I said at the outset, blessed to be a part of the LATO family of supporters. I'll close by saying that not only do Leyna and Denny work tirelessly, to help those in need in Vietnam, but also in the Vietnamese community here in the states, who are in need. As a Vietnamese immigrant herself, with her family, Leyna knows how difficult it can be and has worked hard to have the life she has now and is one of those wonderful souls who truly believes in "giving back" and "paying it forward", which we so need in this world. God Bless you, Leyna Nguyen, for all you do! Denny, you're also in those wishes and I look forward to many more years of fun fundraising events, with you both, for such a great cause! #LATO My name is Russ Neibert and I approve this review. :)

Jim R.5

Volunteer

Rating: 5

LATO rates higher than Five Stars. This organization works hard to deliver help to the underprivileged or those impacted by disaster. LATO Posts many pictures showing their distribution of aid which makes it easy for donors to see their contributions at work. LATO President, Leyna Nguyen, just scheduled an impromptu trip to deliver fans to people suffering in 108° temperatures and high humidity. Where other Presidents of charity organizations may be at home with air conditioning, Leyna is going on this trip enduring the extreme weather conditions to see that people who need help get it. She will be there and report back to donors live as help is delivered to those who need it.

LATO President, Leyna Nguyen, works diligently to setup and run various fundraising events such as Bowling, Karaoke, and Poker Games to raise funds for her charity. I have participated in these and have provided prizes to support the fundraising events.

This is why I support LATO whole heartedly and am a close friend of Leyna and her family.

denduke

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I was blessed to become a donor a few years ago to Love Across the Ocean (LATO). I came to know Leyna Nguyen because of mutual friends in the LA TV news/weather business. A real close friend of hers, Denny Hooten, used to live in my area of the South Bay and then he met Leyna in her area of the SF Valley and the rest is history.. But, this review isn't just about meeting them. It's about their wonderful philanthropy, giving and caring of the whole LATO organization. I have witnessed their good deeds here and abroad many times, and I have participated in some really fun (and worthwhile) charity events like LATO Bowling and Karaoke. Through them, I am also grateful to sponsor a young boy and girl (so that they may attend school) in Vietnam. I am very grateful to call Leyna and Denny, and all the LATO family, part of my Family now. Blessings for your further charity work. Dennis "Duke" Noor, Hermosa Beach, Ca USA

Terry P.3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have worked with Leyna on a few of her fundraising events and can see why LATO has the distinction of being a a great non profit organization. Most individuals when choosing a non profit to donate to often wonder where the money goes and how it is distributed to the people in need. This is where LATO rises above the others. Most non profits are top heavy entities with small percentages actually going to the ones who need it most. Leyna is able to work directly with the people in need and get more of the donations actively working in there favor. Please do not hesitate for one minute in donating to LATO.

Lauren117

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This Charity, L.A.T.O. Is probably one of the most financial smart Charities I've ever seen. Leyna and the group do amazing things for our friends in Vietnam, She teaches them financial responsibility by providing them with tools to better their lives, it's not Just hand outs. She has a low over head, which means, more money goes to the people who need it. What I love about it is, when we have needs this side of the world, they also give $ and volunteer. Like when Houston was underwater, LATO was there, helping, raising money, and working with the locals there to get them aid. I love LATO, and whenever I can, I give. One more thing, she always does fundraisers that bring people together, actively and lovingly.

Previous Stories
5

Donor

Rating: 5

I have been involved with this organization. LATO for approximately 2 years. Leyna works tirelessly for thes children who have no parents. She is giving these kids a chance they may not have been given. I don't only volunteer, I also donate.

Trisha A D.

Donor

Rating: 5

Love across the Ocean, headed by my friend Leyna Nguyen, is selfless. I’ve seen how hard she works to plan her events to raise money. Seeing the videos of the people that so desperately need basic “everyday” items, cry over the most humble necessities is heartwarming and no matter how much you donate, Leyna always gives you a warm thank you!

Tuan N.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

This is an amazing organization which helps those under served people and families in Vietnam. I have attended 3 events and have enjoyed each one of them. Through these events, I have met a lot of new people and made new friends. I always donate whatever I can to the organization each time I attend. By being part of this fantastic organization, it has changed my view about helping those people in my home country who aren't as a fortunate as I am. Always happy to donate whenever needed, knowing that my donation will be put to good use.

Thank you Love Across the Ocean for all you do.

Lisa M.14

Donor

Rating: 5

My heart is full,helping others with this beautiful organization!

gmckayca

Donor

Rating: 5

I sponsor three children in Vietnam through LATO, helping with expenses for food and education. Through the conscientious efforts of this truly great nonprofit organization, the lives and futures of so many young children and their families are brightened immensely. But more than simply helping in this way, LATO reaches out to many under served communities in Vietnam with donations of food, bikes, fans, medical assistance and more. They do this from their hearts and so no explanation is needed as to why it is called Love Across the Ocean. So much love and caring.

Previous Stories

Donor

Rating: 5

I have been a regular sponsor for a couple of years, and contribute also for special needs that arise. This is a truly wonderful charity overseen by truly extraordinary people.

Years ago, Leyna Nguyen saw a need in her native country of Vietnam, and contributed her own time, resources and funds to help build schools for children in poorer regions. Over the years, as she and family members continued on their quest to give back, an official charity was formed so others could help as well.

On a regular basis, LATO raises funds through sponsors and special events to feed children from poor homes and help pay for their schooling costs. But this charity is more than that. When they see a need, they work hard to fill that need, asking their supporters to chip in as they can...whether it be for food or medicine or electric fans or cooking utensils or bicycles or rebuilding orphanages, etc. for families in need. They even helped provide needed supplies to the victims of the Gulf hurricane last year,

It would be terrific if they could additional funds to quickly tap into when new situations begging for assistance emerge.

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Donor

Rating: 5

Leyna is working tirelessly to help make life better for Vietnamese families. Whether it’s something as simple as providing a fan to help cool the house to providing bicycles or even opening schools, I have found LATO to be such a great nonprofit to donate to. We often get to see real time video of families receiving aid and it warms your heart to know you had a small part in making these families smile!

Donor

Rating: 5

A great nonprofit charity ! I had never been a fan of them before I met Leyna Nguyen. I truly do now, the money I donate helps those in need and I trust the funds are used wisely!

Jerry M.1

Donor

Rating: 5

What a fantastic organization and opportunity to assist others in need. Truly a great reason to donate so others may thrive in this world

2

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

My organization Ket Doan Association and I have been partnered with LATO for the past 4 years. We sponsored 8 children via LATO program. LATO has been a great partner and provided us documentation whenever we need. In addition they setup a small gathering for us when we go back to VN to visit our sponsor children's.

5 Mike192

Donor

Rating: 5

LATO is a wonderful charity that helps so many children and family's in need. For about the cost of a monthly gym membership we might take for granted here you can sponsor a child's schooling, school supplies and meals for a month! This program is great because you get updates and pictures of the child you're sponsoring and can keep track of their progress. If you don't want a monthly commitment you can also help through LATO's meaningful gifts program where you can donate farm animals to families in need or just donate any amount any time where your contribution could go towards building a school or supplying fans to people in the extremely hot Vietnamese summer. I'm proud to say I support LATO and the fact that all donations go to the children and families that need and are so thankful for the help.

3

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

This is a wonderful nonprofit that helps so many to receive so many beneficial
services and supplies that may otherwise be overlooked by others. My knowledge of seeing people so humbled by the sheer kindness of this organization to not only provide service, but actual deliver them to remote areas that would otherwise be forgotten. The President and founder Ms Leyna Nguyen is such a profound giver and works tirously to achieve her goals by devoting herself and funding not only as the President, but rolls her sleeves up and works to help provide the necessary services. LATO is poised to be a driving force for the better good of all mankind.

4 Someone Who Cares 19

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Every LATO event I have attended has been amazing and very educational. Leyna brings people together with a common goal- to help others. Everyone does what they are able to in order to meet goals. The celebrity poker events are fun and everyone has a good time, while helping humanity. Additionally, LATO updates us on where our donations, gifts and volunteering service goes to. There are pictures, letters, videos, etc. I love LATO and all the people I have met throught LATO.

2 Jim_39

Donor

Rating: 5

I have been very proactive with a number of charities over the years. LATO is a very special charity that directly impacts people in need. Leyna Nguyen exemplifies the character and leadership that makes LATO such a successful and honorable nonprofit.

3 Greg67

Donor

Rating: 5

I've been a supporter of LATO for 5yrs. I know that every penny goes directly too those in need. Not one person from top to bottom gets paid to work in this org. it all goes to those who are less fortunate than you or me. I donate my time & Love

3

Donor

Rating: 5

Genuine organization with meaningful and benificial help to those who are in need in Vietnam.

4

Donor

Rating: 5

Just became associated with LATO ladt year. Love Leyna Nguyen as she does such an amazing job helping so many children in need.

4

Donor

Rating: 5

I'm a proud donor and volunteer of this great organization. The work and dedication to helping others is second to none and anyone that has ever been involved with LATO will know that. God bless the people of LATO.

5

Donor

Rating: 5

I usually don't write reviews , however I find myself thinking about all the children that Leyna Nguyen have helped. I myself is an orphanage , lost both of my parents at the age of one. I am lucky enough to be here in America to start a new life with all the opportunity to succeed in life. Love Across The ocean is an outstanding nonprofit organization who I find that I can trust. Leyna and all her volunteers are people who is dedicated all their time and expecting nothing back. Recently, I know Leyna went back to Vietnam to provide free dental for the children and family in need. My heart melt when I saw pitures of Leyna and the Dentist who work long hours to help these children. Every dollars donated to LATO goes directly to those in need. My heart always have a special place for LATO and will continue to support this AMAZING nonprofit organization.

5 leannla

Donor

Rating: 5

I first learned about LATO during a fundraising event a few years ago. I also had the pleasure of meeting Leyna Nguyen for the first time that night and was so inspired by all that she does to help others. Her kindness and dedication to help make a positive change in the world has helped countless families in Vietnam who barely have enough food and water to survive. Instead of taking extravagant trips during her vacations, Leyna chooses to spend her time off in Vietnam helping distribute food, medicine, and even providing dental work to those who have never even seen a dentist their whole lives. Leyna and LATO’s volunteers are people who dedicate their time without expecting anything back. I have a special place in my heart for LATO and I will always be a supporter of this wonderful nonprofit where I know that every dollar I donate goes to those who truly need it. Thank You Leyna and LATO for making a difference!

5 Sheila L.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My grandparents were long-time supporters and donors of Love Across the Ocean. They passed away a few years ago. I remember how they always spoke highly of Leyna Nguyen, the founder of LATO. They used to tell everyone in the family how wonderful and selfless of a person Leyna Nguyen is for dedicating herself to help the less fortunate in Vietnam. My grandpa taught us to always show compassion by extending a helping hand (to be like Leyna Nguyen :), and that the more we give, the more we’ll receive. I had the pleasure of meeting Leyna about two years ago at a LATO event and I must say she is everything my grandparents talked about and much much much more! On a personal level, Leyna Nguyen is kind-hearted, a giver, so devoted to helping others without expecting anything in return, and just a wonderful person inside and out. I truly admire her selfless determination to help the less fortunate. You can say that I am and always will be a true supporter of LATO. If you are reading this, I hope to see you at the next LATO event!! Thank you Leyna Nguyen of LATO for your meaningful work and for making this world a better place.

5

Donor

Rating: 5

I’m proud to be associated with Love Across the Ocean (LATO). I know that all my donations are 100% spent on helping to construct schools, donate food, clothing, and medicines. Also, I am able to donate animal gifts to help families to be able to provide for their families. Recently, LATO was able to provide free dental services to families in need. LATO goes above and beyond to help others. I am happy to be associated with this organization and would recommend anyone who is looking for a charity to donate to, this would be the one.

4 pklma

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I'm confident to say that I've found a non-profit organization I can completely trust to donate my time and money.

Love Across The Ocean (LATO) is a non-profit organization founded by Leyna Nguyen. LATO has reach out to help and change countless lives of poor people and children in Vietnam. I've witnessed Leyna Nguyen and her volunteers work tirelessly at her Annual Celebrity Poker Tournament and many other charity events to raise money.

I'm humbled and honored to say that I've been a volunteer for LATO since 2009. I hope that one day I'll have an opportunity to travel with Leyna Nguyen to Vietnam so I can personally help distribute food, livestocks, medicine, bicycle and fans to the less fortunate.

5 Ái K.

Donor

Rating: 5

Love Across The Ocean (LATO) is a non-profit, charitable organization dedicated to helping Ocean Country children and their families. LATO provide clothes, foods, medicines, school's supplies, dental care and emotional support so that the people can experiences the "normal" joys, knowing their lives are significant and meaningful to each and every one. I'm glad that I get to know Leyna Nguyen, her warmth and her humility is evident in that she never draws attention to herself, is not afraid to dig in and do the hard work of serving others. I'm trust 100% , that my donations will go directly to all the needy people through LATO, and will continue to support in any way that I can, so that LATO can spread further to many countries that in need of help. Thank you LATO and Leyna, for an opportunity to help others. Keep up the good work.

4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

LATO is a great charity! I love that you can purchase chickens, pigs and cows to help those in need. They all reproduce which makes it the gift that keeps on giving! The poker tournament is my favorite event, Leyna does such a wonderful job as hostess you really do see her good charitable works. Helping those in need in Vietnam with the many necessities that they need. I chose this charity because I can see how much good LATO does . I am happy to volunteer my time to help my brothers and sisters in Vietnam

4

Board Member

Rating: 5

Love Across the Ocean started with one person, then spread to a small circle of friends and family. Today, we're lucky to have the support of people, young and old, from all over the world, as well as celebrities who help make our events FUN! We're still a small organization with no paid employees. We all volunteer our time and efforts to carry out LATO's mission. There is no office, no fancy brochures, and so basically--no overhead! This means more money goes to the people who need it.

Our Mission
Children are our first priority. LATO dreams of a day when those least able to care for themselves aren't forced to rummage through garbage for food. Originally created to build and renovate schools, LATO soon found itself helping families who struggle to feed themselves on a daily basis. Our volunteers travel to rural areas of Vietnam to distribute food, medicines, and clothing. We search for well-performing students who can't afford to go to school and help them get the education that will open doors to a brighter future. On some projects, LATO works with other non-profits to provide scholarships and build or renovate schools.

As others have mentioned, neither Leyna, her board of directors nor her volunteers are paid for their services and 100% of the donations go to help others.


4

Donor

Rating: 5

Great charities are those where the money you give goes to the people who need it, not to the people who run it. LATO is an all-volunteer organization that is transparent about what it does with donations. You can see who you're helping, and the results are amazing! You won't get fancy brochures and there's no office you can visit, but you have direct contact with the founder,board members, volunteers, and in the case of sponsoring children, you even have direct access to the children you're helping. Trust is everything when it comes to charity, and LATO's outstanding Leadership and performance earns that trust and respect. That's why I have been a supporter for 15 years. Feel confident you are helping the right people, when you do it through LATO!

4

Donor

Rating: 5

There are a ton of nonprofits that say they help people. And I am sure most do, however with Love Across The Ocean you get to see the impact it has on the people it's designed to help. This makes it better in my opinion. To see the smiles on someone's face when they get a meal, a fan, shoes or their teeth cleaned brings it home. We as Americans are blessed with computers and stuff most people in these countries will never see.

It's my turn, it's our turn to give what we can where we can. A great organization that does what it says and the givers get paid silently with big eyes and honest smiles of joy. The best feeling is to know you can make a difference and with LATO you can make a world of difference.

5

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Love Across The Ocean (LATO) is an outstanding nonprofit organization founded in 1997. Through humanitarian efforts, LATO has changed the lives of countless residents in rural Vietnam through the distribution of food, livestock, medicine, bicycle, fans, and clothing. Most recently, Leyna and her entourage provided free dental care to those in need. Some of these people had never seen a dentist before. Her philanthropic efforts to make the world a better place can also be seen through her efforts to build a bridge (literally a bridge!) across a raging river for residents, and has built a school for children. All of those associated with LATO are volunteers, from those who help with fundraisers, to those who travel to help distribute supplies, to the Board of Directors. Every dollar donated to LATO goes DIRECTLY to those in need. As someone who has known Leyna for over 25 years, I can personally attest to her passion, drive, and verve to help others -- this energy is mirrored by those who want to help her achieve her donation goals. LATO is a deserving nonprofit and a great cause.

5

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I just want to say. It is easy for us to talked about giving and charity. It another to take your time to leaved your family and kids to carry out the charity. I admired everything Leyna Nguyen does. No I am not on a level of personnel friends. I have met her and in aww @ what she have accomplish for the good of humanity and her mother country. I wish they was more people like Leyna Nguyen.

6 Jen L.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Leyna Nguyen Love Across The Ocean is the only legit non-profit organizations that Im fully trust and support 100% because every pennies that people have donated, it goes directly to the needy people, non of the money goes to any of the volunteers, or board members.etc..
I've been volunteering for Love Across The Ocean (LATO) for over two years now and recently had a chance to visited few of the children and poor elderly people and places in VietNam whom Leyna Nguyen and her organization helped since 1997!! It's truly a blessing for those needy people that needed help, and without Leyna and LATO, people like myself wouldn't be able to give a helping hand to anyone even if we wanted to!
Besides helping children to have a better learning condition by building and renovating school, LATO also help families who's struggle to feed themselves on a daily basis, Relief effort for flooding victims got hit by typhoons, just to name a few!

Review from Guidestar