Janitor in Miami Lovingly Cooks for Thousands

Doramise Moreau’s selfless act keeps her community healthy and well fed.

A young girl with a plate of healthy food smiles.

(Karelnoppe / Shutterstock.com)

Doramise Moreau is an incredible woman. Since the start of the pandemic, she has cooked thousands of meals, all by herself, to help feed the hungry in her area. She does so from the goodness of her heart, and does not want anything in return. In a time of uncertainty, Moreau brings light to her community by ensuring that everyone is well fed.  

Moreau is a 60-year-old widow who lives with her children, nephew, and three grandchildren in Miami, Florida, according to AP News.  She works part time as a janitor at a technical school. Every day, she walks to work or takes the bus because she does not have a car.

When the pandemic began, Moreau partnered with Notre Dame d'Haiti Catholic Church. Every Thursday and Friday, she borrows the church truck to buy groceries. She then dedicates her time, even into the night, cooking meals in their kitchen. On Saturday, church volunteers serve the food and also deliver it to those who are housebound.

Reginald Jean-Mary, the pastor of the church, told AP News, “She takes care of everybody from A to Z. She’s a true servant. She goes beyond the scope of work to be a presence of hope and compassion for others.”

Moreau goes above and beyond to help those around her. When the church could not afford a cleaner, Moreau did not hesitate to help, agreeing to work for a small sum. And each morning, Moreau prepares Haitian tea and vapors to fight off colds, offering them to the police, church staff, and community leaders.

Caring about people stems back to when Moreau was a young girl in her little village north of Port-au-Prince, Haiti. She would take food from her home and offer it to the hungry, frustrating her mother who told her to stop taking food from their cupboards. Moreau recalls, “I told [my mom], ‘You can whup me today, you can whup me tomorrow, but I’m going to continue to do it.’”

Hunger is now prevalent across the US. Once Moreau understood how dire the situation was for those in Miami, she turned to action. As stated on Feeding America, the coronavirus pandemic has caused more than 42 million people—including 13 million children—a lack of access to a consistent food supply. 

Due to this, people from all different backgrounds come to Moreau for a meal. “Americans, Spanish, Haitian, they come here,” Moreau said. “Even when I’m closing, they say, ’Please, can I have some,’ and I give it to them, because if they go home and have nothing it hurts my feelings,” she told AP News.

For the 1,000 to 1,500 meals she prepares weekly, she makes traditional Haitian recipes, according to The Washington Post. She serves baked fish, roast turkey, rice and beans, fried chicken, and fried plantains. “People ask me, ‘Why don’t you go home and rest? Why don’t you sleep?’” Moreau said. “But I don’t need a lot of sleep. I would rather be here making food for the people. I ask every day for more strength to keep doing what I’m doing.”

For all that she has done, Moreau was nominated by community leaders to receive a new Toyota Corolla, complete with a red bow. She can now drive to work and to the grocery shop to buy food for the community meals. 

Moreau’s outlook is so inspirational, everyone can learn from her actions. “Sometimes when you’re looking at people in their face, they don’t need to ask you,” she told AP News. “You can see they need something.” Her strong dedication to helping people in need makes her a true role model. With each meal she lovingly prepares, she brings warmth and hope into the world.

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