Volunteer Pays it Forward to Valley mom who feeds homeless youth

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A volunteer Pays it Forward to Olivia Cano Wells for helping to feed homeless youth. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) A volunteer Pays it Forward to Olivia Cano Wells for helping to feed homeless youth. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -

A good, hot meal goes a long way, especially for young people living on the street.

In Thursday’s Pay It Forward report, we’re introducing you to a Valley woman whose kindness runs in the family.

Valley volunteers make food with love twice a month, as they create home-cooked meals for teenagers and seniors in need—and Olivia Cano Wells, a Phoenix mother, made it all happen

“My favorite reaction is when someone comes up to me and says, ‘That is what my mom used to make for us,’ and they had a smile and it brings back a small memory like that. And we’re happy about it, and we’re good,” said Wells, of Comfort Food for Homeless.

A few years ago, Wells’ two teen sons had a school project in which they helped feed the homeless—that’s where Comfort Food for Homeless started.

Family and friends team up with the non-profit Tumbleweed Center and provided warm home-cooked meals at a time when they've needed it the most.

"When we are there, we don’t ask questions. We just say, ‘Would you like another plate? Another serving of this?’ We just show them we care,” Wells said.

"She is feeding teenagers that are homeless," volunteer Yvonne Lopez said about Wells.

Lopez has seen how much time and money Wells has spent buying groceries and supplies to keep the program going.

"She knows that there are people always in need and always hungry and she tries to minimize that," Lopez said.

Lopez reached out to CBS 5 Pay it Forward about Wells, a woman determined to make a difference, and we followed along for the big surprise.

“I went and nominated you for Channel 5 Pay it Forward because you serve the community. I see on your website all that you do," Lopez said. “So because of that-- that's why we are going to present you $500 for Pay it Forward.”

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