Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By (CNA/EWTN News)

1/16/2014 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

An Orange county chef who began feeding impoverished children out of his restaurant in 2005 has created a special project to continue the work, which he hopes to expand to a global level.

Serato has fed kids pasta every night since his mother asked him to.

Serato has fed kids pasta every night since his mother asked him to.

Highlights

By (CNA/EWTN News)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

1/16/2014 (1 year ago)

Published in Home & Food

Keywords: Hotel, kids, food, homeless, vitameal


VATICAN CITY, January 15 (CNA/EWTN News) - "Growing up I knew what it was like first hand to be a part of a low income family," Serato told CNA in a Jan. 14 interview, "so I identified with these kids."

"I experienced many struggles myself as I came from a place of hardship and struggle."

Serato, originally from Verona, Italy, where he grew up as one of seven children in a poor family, moved to the United States over 30 years ago and began to work as a dishwasher, but within 5 years had become the chef and owner of his own restaurant, the Anaheim White House, which is now a high-end restaurant in the area.

In 2003 the chef created "Caterina's Club," a project named after his mother that raises money for underprivileged children.

When Serato's mother came to visit him in 2005, he took her to the local Boys and Girls Club, which is the main recipient of his clubs charitable funds, and while they were there they encountered a young boy eating a bag of potato chips for dinner.

It was then that they learned of the situation of the "motel kids," which is a common phenomenon in the area where low-income families are unable to pay rent for an apartment, and are forced to live day-to-day in cheap hotels.

Often immersed in an environment of poverty, drugs, alcohol and prostitution, the kids often go without dinners because their parents cannot afford to pay for food, and there are usually no kitchens in the hotels where they stay.

When they heard this, Serato recalled that his mother told him "Bruno! Go back to your restaurant and make all of these kids dinner!" which he did, and has done every night since.

"I continued to feed them because I thought to myself, I don't have a warm meal just one night a week, or a few times a month," he explained, "I eat dinner every night, and so do you. So these kids, they are going to eat every night!"

In 2011 Serato was nominated as one of CNN's "Top 10" local heroes for feeding over 200 children pasta every night as an out-of-pocket expense. Since then publicity about his project has grown, and he now feeds over 1,000 children each night, operating almost 100 percent off of donations.

"The expansion of the feeding the kids has only been possible because of our generous donors" and by "the help of God," the chef noted, adding that a 2013 fundraiser held by local KFI Radio Station "raised roughly 21,000 pounds of pasta and sauce alone."

"It is partnerships like this that enable us to reach the people who want to help in our community but don't know how or where," he noted, adding that "we currently feed children at after school programs at eight locations."

Sharing the story of a family of six who lived in a motel for 12 years, Serato recalled that he originally met the family's son, Carlos, at the Boys and Girls Club.

"I soon realized he was part of the Boys and Girls Club's Motel Outreach Program," the chef recalled, stating that after learning "what a motel family was," he "learned that Carlos has been living in a motel his entire life, and had known nothing different."

"His parents had been stuck in the motel situation for 12 years, paying more monthly than they would if they were in an apartment or town home," he explained, adding that "the only thing restricting them and their children from getting out of the motel life was a down payment."

Being moved by the family's situation, Caterina's Club found "a good place for them," and once the paperwork had been finalized, the chef "provided them with the down payment that had been holding Carlos and his family in a motel for 12 years."

Expressing his hopes for the future, Serato highlighted his desire to "inspire people not just in America, but a crossed the globe to adopt Caterina's program," and to "name theirs after their own mother."

Serato voiced that although he understands these are "huge hopes," Caterina's Club is already communicating with various contacts in "Italy, New York, Chicago, South America, and surrounding cities in Southern California."

Other organizations that have worked closely with the chef's project are the KFI Radio Station, the YMCA, the Fresh Produce and Floral Council, as well as an organization called Illumination Foundation, which seeks to move families out of hotels to "safe comfortable homes and apartments."

Serato observed that he is also "a good friend" of the Bishop of Orange County, Kevin Vann, who writes about and promotes the chef's efforts in various ways throughout the diocese.

"Every child deserves to go to bed with a warm nutritional meal in their stomachs," Serato stressed, "not just in Anaheim, not just in Verona, but in every city, every village, everywhere."

You can help hungry kids too!

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for July 2015
Universal:
That political responsibility may be lived at all levels as a high form of charity.
Evangelization: That, amid social inequalities, Latin American Christians may bear witness to love for the poor and contribute to a more fraternal society.



Comments


More Home & Food

Homeless grow large garden for food in Atlanta Watch

Image of A garden plot on the Metro Atlanta Task Force shelter roof.

By Kenya Sinclair (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Homeless people come together and plant a garden to provide food for a shelter in Atlanta. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Anita Beaty, executive director of Metro Atlanta Task Force told Atlanta Progressive News, "It is important to share and train residents in ... continue reading


Hilarious video captures American children taste-testing school lunches from around the world Watch

Image of

By Hannah Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

American children were filmed trying seven different foreign school lunches and most were met with disapproval. The video by Cut.com quickly became viral, with over 200,000 views within 24 hours. MUNTINLUPA, PHILIPPINES (Catholic Online) - Common school lunches from ... continue reading


Are chilies the new super food? Study finds the pepper can help with weight loss Watch

Image of Chilies are linked with weight loss.

By Hannah Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A new health study found that chilies can help shed pounds. According to The Daily Mail, adding some fiery chilies to food can help stop overeating -which leads to obesity- by triggering a receptor in the stomach. Further research will be conducted to present a more ... continue reading


6 wonder foods that help you lose weight and not feel hungry Watch

Image of

By Hannah Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

It is highly recommended to eat nutrient and fiber-rich food and avoid carbohydrates when trying to speed up metabolism, as advised by Nutritionist Frida Harju in an interview with Daily Mail. MUNTINLUPA, PHILIPPINES (Catholic Online) - Food is not really the main ... continue reading


'Wireless Armour': New underwear go on sale to protect men's fertility from 'harmful wireless signals'

Image of

By Atarah Haely (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Although studies are still to be conducted to establish a strong relationship between electromagnetic radiation through phones and other similar devices and fertility, a line of boxer underwear has been launched linked with this concern. The "Wireless Armour" boxers ... continue reading


Have you been cooking your food wrong? Weight-loss expert reveals the 'healthy way' of cooking popular foods Watch

Image of

By Atarah Haely (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The way we cook food affects our health, not only the food we eat. Dietitian and weight-loss expert Sophie Claessens shared some tips on proper preparation of different foods for health benefits, as cited in The Daily Mail. To ensure we are consuming good food, the ... continue reading


Both provider and consumer, African nations fulfill their need - and love, of tea Watch

Image of While a relative newcomer to the international tea trade, Kenya's tea industry is new, only going into full gear until the 1950's.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The African continent has a long love affair with the hot beverage tea. While Ethiopia remains an excellent exporter of coffee, many African nations have put their own spin on tea. Steeped in both tealeaves and tradition, these countries offer their own ... continue reading


4 unusual and easy hair tips that you've never heard of before Watch

Image of

By Atarah Haely (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Women typically spend a lot of effort in taking care and styling their hair. The hair, the crowning glory, is now one of the most fashionable and fashion-ated aspect of the human appearance. Therefore, bad hair days are supposedly a "no-no," especially to women who ... continue reading


The strangest household item expiration dates you never knew about Watch

Image of

By Nikky Andres (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Ditch pillows after six months, cycle helmets in three years and scourers every WEEK -- the bizarre expiry dates you've never heard of... PillowsManaging director of online bedding retailer Slumber Slumber Neville Moore pointed out that cheap polyester-filled pillows ... continue reading


What is America's favorite fast-food chain? Watch

Image of

By Nikky Andres (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Despite the controversy and series of protests fast food chain, Chick-fil-A faced a few years ago, according to the American Customer Satisfaction Index Restaurant Report 2015, Chick-fil-A still ranked the highest fast-food chain in the U.S. in terms of customer ... continue reading


All Home & Food News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Colossians 1:1-8
1 From Paul, by the will of God an apostle of Christ ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 4:38-44
38 Leaving the synagogue he went to Simon's house. ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for September 2nd, 2015 Image

St. Ingrid of Sweden
September 2: Born in Skänninge, Sweden, in the 13th century, St. Ingrid lived ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter