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Bakersfield Burrito Project's co-founder faithfully feeding homeless community after husband's death

Bakersfield Burrito Project's co-founder faithfully feeding homeless community after husband's death
Posted at 6:49 PM, Nov 28, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-28 21:49:32-05

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — Rain or shine, every Sunday, the Bakersfield Burrito Project provides breakfast to those in need of a hot meal.

Co-founder Belinda Lopez Rickett said this is her 10th year serving the homeless community, but this year has been her hardest.

"There are times where people come in and they feel like they're going to walk in and see Jason making beans," Belinda said.

Less than a year after battling homelessness herself, Belinda's husband and business partner Jason Rickett was found dead in his office in August. Belinda told 23ABC that Jason died of natural causes.

"It takes four people to do his job and we are all juggling things to fill those gaps he has left, the void that he has left," she added.

But thankfully, Belinda's team of volunteers are as dedicated as she is. Every Sunday they show up at 10:30 a.m., to help Belinda prep and roll burritos. By noon they're setting up at Golden Empire Gleaners in central Bakersfield to handout clothes, hygiene products and their newest item on the menu... pizza!

"We're very fortunate to have Tacos La Villa as well as Bakersfield Pizza Company generously donate pizzas for us," Belinda said.

Belinda said the generous donations she receives doesn't quite cover the growing cost to run the project or the number of homeless she she started in 2009.

"We have seen a little bit of increase in the homeless population some people they're transients they came in from other areas LA, some areas outside of Bakersfield and Kern County and they just need a burrito for the day or they're trying to make roots here in Bakersfield."

Despite her financial and personal hardships, Belinda said she will always help her community... one burrito at a time.