Emilio Bonifacio Will Celebrate Youth Day in the D.R.

Bonifacio meets with orphans during a trip to the D.R. in December.

COCONUT CREEK, Fla. (Jan. 30, 2012) — Miami Marlins baseball star Emilio Bonifacio will travel to Puerto Plata on Jan. 31 to distribute baseball equipment and uniforms with Food For The Poor, the largest international relief and development organization in the United States. His visit will coincide with National Youth Day in the Dominican Republic.

This will be the third time that hometown hero Bonifacio has reached out through Food For The Poor to children in the D.R. who have dreams of following his path. In December, he surprised orphans at the Hogar Escuela Santo Domingo Savio with an early Christmas gift when he enjoyed a meal with them and then gave each of them T-shirts with the team’s new logo. In 2010, he joined Food For The Poor in distributing more than 2,000 mitts, bats, balls, helmets, and uniforms to orphans.

“It was an honor to be there at the orphanage and spend time with the kids. I take pride in helping them any which way I can,” Bonifacio said of his recent December trip. “Growing up close to that orphanage, I’m proud to have the opportunity to give back to the community I call home.”

About 200 boys will benefit from the clothing and equipment distribution on Jan. 31, with Obispado de Puerto Plata, Food For The Poor’s partner in the D.R. After the distribution, two young-adult teams will play an exhibition game for the visitors from South Florida. The teams are part of the Jose Nunez league, a group of up-and-coming baseball players from very poor surrounding communities.

The next day, Bonifacio and the group from Food For The Poor and Obispado de Puerto Plata will visit smaller homes to spend time with the orphans and distribute clothing and other goods. 

“These simple gifts of baseball equipment and clothing make a world of difference for these boys,” said Angel Aloma, Executive Director of Food For The Poor. “These simple gifts have the power to change the course of these boys’ lives. Knowing someone cares helps them to dream of a better life. We are so grateful to the Marlins and to Mr. Bonifacio for having such a heart for the poor.”

Bonifacio signs autographs for the boys in December.

Food For The Poor and the Miami Marlins also have worked together to raise awareness of the need in Haiti, and representatives of the two groups traveled together in May 2011 to celebrate the opening of a village in Malfety. Donations to the Homes for Haiti campaign led to the construction of Inspiration Village, which consists of 41 two-room houses with personal sanitation units. The community has a water well, a solar powered water purification unit, and a community center.

Food For The Poor, the largest international relief and development organization in the nation, does much more than feed millions of the hungry poor in 17 countries of the Caribbean and Latin America. This interdenominational Christian ministry provides emergency relief assistance, clean water, medicines, educational materials, homes, support for orphans and the aged, skills training and micro-enterprise development assistance, with more than 96 percent of all donations going directly to programs that help the poor.

For more information, please visit www.FoodForThePoor.org.

Kathy Skipper
Food For The Poor
Public Relations Director
954-427-2222 x 6614