The feel-good story for your day comes from Anaheim White House Restaurant.
Since 2005, owner Bruno Serato has been serving free pasta dinners to underprivileged children, many who live in motels. This summer, the Italian chef came up with a special contest–the restaurant would host free luncheons, each valued at about $4,000, for 12 deserving local charities. Each organization submitted a description of their mission and how they would use the prize.
While reading the entries, Serato couldn't choose just one, explaining to the Orange County Register: “The first application was from an organization for children with brain injuries – and I thought, 'There's a winner.' The next was for children without parents and without tutoring. … Before I knew it, there were 50 that were deserving, then 100.”
So he chose virtually all of them.
It all played out Oprah-style. “YOU get a luncheon! YOU get a luncheon! YOU get a luncheon!”
Sort of. The announcement was made Wednesday night when 400 representatives from the nonprofits gathered at Anaheim White House to see if they were among the 12 winners. Indeed, they were–all of them. Serato decided to give away 200 luncheons, each for 100 guests, an estimated total of at least $800,000.
He'll host one charity fundraiser each week for the next four years.
Over the past couple years, Serato has been profiled as a local hero by CNN, CBS News and ABC 7. Take a look at some clips here.