Cooks in the Kitchen- Volunteer Spotlight: Valentina & Guiseppina – Orlando Union Rescue Mission

Cooks in the Kitchen- Volunteer Spotlight: Valentina & Guiseppina

 In Newsletter Story, Story, Volunteer Spotlight

For mother-and-daughter duo Giuseppina and Valentina, family is an essential pillar of life.
When Valentina fell on hard times, her mother was there to pick her back up. Not everyone has such a supportive family. Valentina knew this and wanted to support other women facing financial instability who, unlike her, faced their battle alone.

Giuseppina discovered the Mission through a simple Google search. Immediately, both women were interested in volunteering. “We could see it was about rehabilitation and getting someone back on their feet,” Valentina shared. Their service began with daycare during the
Mission’s Sunday services in Moody Chapel. Soon, however, they were drawn to their best
fit, fixing delicious meals in the Family Home kitchen. As Italian women, “we love to cook, we
love to feed people,” Valentina asserts.

Now, they help prepare dinner at the Mission together every Sunday evening. They hope every “home-cooked meal” brings a feeling of family to guests. To add a little fun, they celebrate the holidays, too. During Easter, they brought chocolate bunnies, and in October, they dressed up for Halloween.

While they serve, Valentina says they can see that the Mission truly works. Even though they build friendships with guests, they are thrilled to hear when one of their newfound friends moves out of the Family Home, equipped for a life of self-sufficiency. Sundays at the Mission are a time of bonding for Valentina and her mom. Valentina believes her 8-year-old son may soon be ready to join them
as well. “Life pulls you in all kinds of directions,” Valentina admits. But the Mission pulls her back to one of the things that matters most – the love and support of family.

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