Dino Impagliazzo has been cooking for decades, though not professionally, he once worked for Italy’s social security department. Now he is known as a chef, but most of his loyal “customers” can’t afford to buy even a bread stick. At 90 years old, Impagliazzo is known as Rome’s “chef of the poor.”
It all began 15 years ago when a homeless man at a Rome train station asked him for money to buy a sandwich. “I realized that perhaps instead of buying one sandwich, making some sandwiches for him and for the friends who were there would be better, and thus began our adventure,” he said.
Now, three days a week, he and other volunteers of the RomAmoR (RomeLove) association he founded make the rounds of food markets and bakeries for contributions from retailers who supply the food. The other four days of the week they spend cooking and serving food in various places of the city like train stations.
Except on Saturday nights, because that is when they set up under a portico outside St. Peter’s Square to feed the growing number of homeless who sleep in the area, where Pope Francis has also opened medical and bathing facilities for them. His group of volunteers has grown over the years and now some 300 people work out of their own kitchen.
Impagliazzo even received a honorific award from Italian President Sergio Mattarella recognizing him as a “hero of our times,” and with this good work, he truly is. He is also the heart of your Good News Story of the Day, which you can find here.
If you are wondering how he got to this place with so much help he shares these words: “We try to involve more and more people so that Rome becomes a city where people can love each other, you know?” he said while preparing soup in a professional kitchen. “It’s solidarity.”
Story and Image from Reuters.