In 2009, John Ozzello, the President of Amigo's de Bucerias at the time, saw there was a need for a food bank in Bucerias. He managed to set up distribution and collection centers for this need.
Currently, we are feeding 430 families per month except for December when we provide an extra 320 despensas. Our despensas consist of rice, beans, maseca, oil, fideo, and tomato puree. It is taken to La Fuente church, Tercera Edad, Abuelos de Bucerias, Ixtapa, Agape Mezcales, Agape Punta de Mita, and San Ignacio where volunteers package it into individual despensas to be handed out.
Along with our monthly despensas, because of the help you have also shown, we are also able to provide 'emergency relief' as needed. In 2015, there was a flood in Nayarit as well as Hurricane Patricia. We stepped up and provided 700 extra despensas to people who were affected by the flood and hurricane. This would NOT have happened if it weren't for your generosity.
We do many small fundraisers throughout the high season in order to continue to feed the needy in our area the entire year. YoYo Mo's Pizza and Sports Bar are the #1 supporters of this cause. They allow us, as well as encourage us, to do as many fund raisers in their establishments as we can. You will see raffle tickets for tequila or 50/50 tickets being sold during NFL Sundays, Superbowl playoffs, NHL games, Boxing matches, Olympic games, and other major sporting events. Glenn and Tanya, the owner's of YoYo Mo's, have donated all of the tequila for the raffles. They are a crucial part of our team and we can't thank them enough for all they do.
In 2012, we hosted the first annual Whale Watching fund raiser. This has become an annual event - dare we say an institution in Bucerias. It is an enjoyable day on the ocean watching whales, snorkelling, socializing, eating and drinking. There is also a raffle on board with many wonderful prizes.
In December 2013, we started up the "Elves at YoYo Mo's" baking crew. This is lead by Gail Wranovsky who puts so much work into making this a success. People in our community come together to bake, and package cookies to give along with our despensas during the holiday season.
In 2014, we added The Beatles Tribute held at the Drunken Duck. It is a fun afternoon and is a yearly event. If you love the Beatles, this is a not to be missed event!
This winter, we are adding on a Happy Days Sockhop to be held at the Drunken Duck. Dust off your dancing shoes and put on that poodle skirt as it is bound to be a wonderful time.
Throughout the year, we also receive donations of clothing, school supplies, kitchen supplies, appliances, furniture ect. These donated items are distributed to the needy in the north bay at no charge.
To make donations for the John Ozzello Memorial Food Bank there are two ways to do it:
• If you are in Bucerias and want to give cash, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
• Paypal directly: email@example.com (add a note saying FOOD BANK)
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From activities like hiking, swimming, bike riding and yoga, to restaurants offering healthy menus, Vallarta-Nayarit is the ideal place to continue - or start - your healthy lifestyle routine.