On December 24, 2012, at 11 a.m., hundreds of children enjoyed a special holiday treat on Christmas Eve when Councilwoman Judy Waldman distributed over 800 toys at the Homestead Soup Kitchen located at 105 SW 3rd Avenue.
A special thanks to the businesses that assisted in the toy drive by hosting drop-off boxes at: Homestead City Hall; The William "Bill" F. Dickinson Homestead Community Center; Historic Homestead Town Hall Museum; Richard Accursio’s Capri Restaurant; Mamma Mia Pizzeria; The Big Cheese; and Walgreen’s at 1820 N. Canal Drive. Councilwoman Waldman was deeply touched by the generosity from the City of Homestead employees who brought toys to the City’s Holiday luncheon; by the special collection of toys from Ms. Veronica Rivera’s tenth grade class at Keys Gate Charter High School; and by Boy Scout Francesco Lombardo, who donates his birthday gifts every year to those less fortunate.
Councilwoman Waldman, along with many volunteers: her non-profit organization, The Little Angels; Mayor’s Youth Council; Maria Lombardo (owner of Mamma Mia Pizzeria), and her son, Francesco, distributed hundreds of toys to underprivileged children. Also adding to the spirit of the season, Congressman Joe Garcia delivered a van full of food and drink, while the Homestead Soup Kitchen provided a Christmas meal to the families present. Florida City Mayor Wallace provided City trucks as the sleigh to transport the toys.
“Sharing the spirit of Christmas with children is a highlight of my year. Many of these young children wouldn’t know the joys of opening Christmas presents without the generous support of those who selflessly contribute to our toy drive,” said Councilwoman Waldman. She holds a strong passion for helping children that cannot help themselves and has been doing so since she was a child of 13 years. This explains her love and devotion to the Homestead Soup Kitchen throughout the entire year.