The month of December is a festive whirlwind. Our calendars quickly become filled with parties and celebrations, and we spend time decorating our homes and planning meals that make the holidays feel special. But to many families, simply having a home and enough food poses a challenge—not just during the holidays, but every day. This month, we’d like to shine the spotlight on Catarina’s Club, one of the causes supported by Youngevity’s Be The Change Foundation. Catarina’s Club began by focusing on two very fundamental necessities: homes and food.
Chef Bruno Serato, owner of Anaheim White House Restaurant, was visiting a Boys and Girls Club near his restaurant with his Mother, Catarina. She noticed a young boy eating potato chips for dinner because his family didn’t have money for food and she insisted that Bruno make him some pasta. With this simple gesture, Catarina’s Club was born. Bruno began making healthy dinners for as many as 1200 children, five nights a week, in and around the Anaheim area.
This spirit of generosity opened Bruno’s eyes to another fundamental problem in Orange County: housing for struggling and homeless families. Oftentimes motels become de-facto housing for families in crisis; becoming trapped in the unsafe and transient motel living environment. Catarina’s Club began the Welcome Home program to provide families the necessary funds, furniture and appliances, and financial advice needed to begin new lives.
To date, Chef Bruno has served over 1 million meals to hungry kids and helped 103 families transition to a safe home. Not content to stop there, Catarina’s Club, in partnership with Anaheim Union’s P21 Mentorship Program, recently began another effort in breaking the cycle of poverty with their Hospitality Academy. This academy provides at-risk youth with an area to spend time after school engaged in learning opportunities that can positively impact their future.
Youngevity’s Be the Change Foundation is so proud to help support organizations like Catarina’s Club. Chef Bruno is doing the noblest work, and is a shining example of ordinary people doing extraordinary things in their community. We each have the ability to follow Chef Bruno’s example and be the change we want to see in our communities, country, and around the world; it can be as simple as feeding someone who’s hungry. This crusade unites us in our humanity. Thank you for your membership in the Javalution Coffee Club, which supports critically important organizations like Catarina’s Club!