A group of teens known as the "Burrito Boyz" has made and delivered more than 33,000 breakfast burritos to San Diego's homeless. But it took a mentor to inspire them.
Let's call him Burrito Dad.
Michael Johnson grew somewhat alarmed at son Alec's gizmo-packed Christmas list two years ago, so he decided to impart some perspective. According to Yahoo, he and wife Mehrnaz thought feeding the homeless might do the trick. Thus, the family and Alec's friend Luke Trolinger set about wrapping 54 egg-and-cheese burritos one Sunday in November and handed them out.
More than 130 Sundays later, their nonprofit Hunger 2 Help is rolling in good will. It has grown to seven Burrito Boyz and other volunteers, all of whom help make hundreds of tortilla-wrapped meals. They operate out of Johnson's business, Long Island Mike's Pizza, and distribute the food to a neighborhood in need.
"Anything can happen if you take the first step," the dad told Yahoo. "I’m shocked at what’s happened with this little project. Now there’s a major impact."
Johnson said in the San Diego Union-Tribune in 2011 that they originally planned the charitable venture for a few months. “But after that first week, we knew we weren’t going to stop,” he said.
The father has the kids working with assembly-line precision. "We have somebody scoop the eggs, have somebody ... on the cheese,” he explained to NBC San Diego in 2011. “And then folders, we put in a pan and then we put it right in the oven.”
He reminds the crew to make eye contact and get to know their customers. "We ask for so much, and they ask for so little," Trolinger told CBS in the segment below. "They get just a burrito and they're so happy."
Johnson also noticed changes in son Alec from the get-go of their burrito mission. "My son looked to me as a young man that day," he told CBS.
But to the area's homeless, Alec is one of the Boyz. “They’ve got the most beautiful hearts," burrito recipient Jazzmine Sharp told the Union-Tribune.