April 16, 2001

Del Monte Foods Company and Abriendo Puertas, a non-profit organization serving families in need living in Miami's East Little Havana community, hosted a Mother's Day breakfast celebration, "Celebrando a Mamá en Miami" honoring the vital role Hispanic mothers play in their children's lives and in their communities. Community leaders joined the mothers and their children in a celebration, highlighted by a $15,000 donation by Del Monte Foods.

In the spirit of traditional Mother's Day celebrations and gifts, Del Monte Foods presented a $10,000 check and $5,000 in Del Monte products to Abriendo Puertas to support the family center's programs that benefit mothers and children in East Little Havana, one of the poorest areas in Miami-Dade County.

"Del Monte Foods is pleased to assist Abriendo Puertas, an organization that provides invaluable support to the mothers and their children in this community, " said William Spain, Del Monte Foods Chief Corporate Affairs Officer. "Mother's Day is an ideal occasion to salute the extraordinary efforts of Abriendo Puertas moms, by addressing some of their needs. Too often their efforts go unnoticed and unrecognized, as is true for Mothers everywhere. Indeed, this Mother's Day event honors all Mothers in Florida."

Children from the center were asked to participate in a contest to nominate their mother as "La Mamá Numero Uno" de Del Monte. They submitted essays and artwork on the theme "Celebrando a Mamá en Miami". An independent panel reviewed all entries and selected the winner who received special recognition, a prize and certificate. Children also performed songs for the audience.

"By highlighting the contribution of these mothers to their own families and their neighborhood, the event serves to foster pride in our Hispanic heritage, enhance self esteem and offer positive role models for other area residents," said Marta Pizarro, Abriendo Puertas executive director. "This generous contribution from Del Monte Foods will help us better serve these mothers and their children."

The Abriendo Puertas Family Center, which opened in 1995, provides family support and intensive intervention services that are neighborhood driven, strength-based, family-focused and culturally sensitive. The center focuses on the development, growth and enrichment of all families, implementing an innovative system of service delivery. All participants in the program "contract" for services by agreeing to provide volunteer hours to support the center's activities and the needs of the community. Since there is no monetary fee for services, volunteers earn "Time Dollars" which allows them to "purchase" services.

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