Pitching In: LUCERO makes difference at Cristo Rey Community Center
Dozens of needy and hungry people brave all types of weather to line up before 9 a.m. weekday mornings outside the Cristo Rey Community Center kitchen in north Lansing.
They wait for the metal shutter to slide open and a free community breakfast to be served by Cristo Rey staff and volunteers.
For about a year and a half, LCC student and LUCERO (Latinos Unidos con Energia Respeto y Orgullo) member Jaime Martinez has worked in the kitchen at Cristo Rey, where he is responsible for preparing food, organizing and working with volunteers.
“It feels good, you know, giving back to the community, said Martinez March 30 as he darted through the small kitchen, delivering miscellaneous cooking supplies to volunteers. “It’s good to feel the appreciation.”
Martinez is a member of LUCERO, a program at LCC focused on creating a positive connection for Latino students.
Felipe Lopez Sustaita, LUCERO coordinator and academic adviser, has been working to organize community service events at Cristo Rey, where participants plan to work in the garden and kitchen twice monthly.
Michelle Hill, director of development at Cristo Rey Community Center, said the center currently services approximately 60 breakfast meals and bag lunches per day. She said those numbers increase during the summer.
Breakfast consists of different carbohydrates, vegetables, proteins, fruit and beverages. Lunches include sandwiches, vegetables and fruit.
“The main goals are that the food be healthy and it is served in a clean environment,” Hill said.
For information or to volunteer, email Felipe Lopez Sustaita at firstname.lastname@example.org/