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Four local organizations give back to Spanish-speaking community

ROANOKE, Va. – Local organizations provided support for select families within Roanoke’s Spanish-speaking community on Tuesday afternoon.

Grace Immigration and Casa Latina teamed up with FarmBurguesa and Kids Square to provide burgers for lunch and stem-focused activity kits for kids.

“This is an opportunity for folks to get out to a place away from their homes to get food that is a treat, and FarmBurguesa’s hamburgers, as you know, are very good,” said Kris Tilley-Lubbs, the president of Casa Latina.

40 people received a specific voucher to attend Tuesday’s event, but up to 100 people were invited. Those participating simply drove up to FarmBurguesa and were handed meals and activity kits through their car windows. The $600 effort was funded by Jennifer Smyrnos’s mom and an anonymous donor.

"Reading about how single mothers were struggling in California where she works as a nurse. She knew that the communities I served here in Roanoke must be struggling as well and so she was really motivated to help," said Smyrnos.

Smyrnos owns Grace Immigration and can attest to recent struggles facing the Hispanic community.

“A lot of these individuals are not qualifying for the stimulus check,” Smyrnos said. “Their businesses may not qualify for a paycheck protection program and these are individuals that are often found in the restaurant industries, that are losing their positions as a result.”

Helping those who fall through the cracks who share so much with the community.

"And we’re very fortunate to have them in our community to bring diversity and a vibrant culture to share with us,” Tilley-Lubbs said.


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