Naples woman’s non-profit gives cupcakes to the homeless

Reporter: Michelle Alvarez Writer: Matias Abril
Published: Updated:

There’s no way you can celebrate a birthday without cake. In this case, cupcakes.

One woman in Naples started a non-profit to buy cupcakes for homeless people on their birthdays. It’s now expanded to getting gifts and other necessary items for those in need.

Maria Wassef started a non-profit called Maria’s Birthday Wishes for the Homeless. They buy cupcakes for homeless people’s birthdays, but they also purchase other gifts and necessary items for those in need.

She said she hopes people see this story and then make it their mission to do something nice for someone else.

Wassef’s love of giving back started with a single cupcake back in 2009.

At the time, Wassef was volunteering when she met an elderly homeless woman. After getting to know each other, she learned it was the woman’s birthday, but no one had wished her a happy birthday in over five years.

“I keep on thinking about it. I’m like, I have to do something about this is simple. It’s a cupcake. It doesn’t cost a lot of money,” Wassef said.

That day, Wassef purchased the stranger a cupcake to celebrate her birthday and then made it her mission to never have another birthday forgotten.

“It’s just unbelievable, that feeling that you get, the warm feeling and the joy that you see in somebody else just smiling,” Wassef said.

When Wassef’s birthday wishes for the homeless started, they were buying cupcakes for homeless people’s birthdays.

Since then, the group has expanded and buys other gifts and necessary items for people in need.

“The homeless, I don’t care what, they’re there. I don’t care what they’re going through. They’re just human just like us, and they feel sadness, and they feel happy and they feel cold and they feel hot, or the feelings are human feelings. We all are the same, and sometimes just little things can make their life so much better,” Wassef said.

Wassef said she delivered gifts and necessary items to the Shelter for Abused Women and Children and Nami Collier, and there’s more in her garage being delivered to Immokalee this weekend.

If you want to know more about the non-profit or get involved, click here.

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