NASCAR star, local nonprofit host Thanksgiving shopping spree

HOMESTEAD, FLA. (WSVN) - Professional NASCAR driver Joey Logano joined forces with Joshua’s Heart Foundation on Thursday to help 103 South Florida families get what they need for their Thanksgiving meals.

For families who took part in the shopping spree, held at a Publix Supermarket in Homestead, this opportunity was a godsend driven by generosity. “You know, it’s very expensive, If somebody helps me like that, it’s a blessing,” said one woman. “I’m so happy.”

Families like Esperanza Ponce and her four children were paired up with a volunteer and given $80 gift cards to shop for their holiday meals. “We don’t have that much food, so we come here so we can get food,” said one of Ponce’s children. “We can see if it can last for, like, a month or two.”

Joshua Williams, the president of Joshua’s Heart Foundation, told 7News that getting to know these families is always an enriching experience. “As a volunteer you get to take the families with you,” he said. “You’re talking to them, shopping with them around Publix and you’re getting to learn about them, and then you’re helping them get the food that they want, serving them and then checking out food with them.”

From turkeys to chocolate, these shoppers loaded up on what they needed for their family get-togethers next week. Each of them also received a free pie, courtesy of Publix, on their way out.

This scene of smiling faces and contagious generosity is the mission of Logano and his wife Brittany, one they accomplish through the Joey Logano Foundation. “We do it during the most popular time, because our mission is to inspire others to do great things like this,” he said. “When there’s a lot of eyes on our sport, that’s why we do it during that point in the season, to try to get people to see it and inspire others to do the same.”

That’s why, before arriving to South Florida, Logano teamed up with Joshua’s Heart, a local organization on a mission to stump hunger. Together they gave back to the people of Homestead, on the biggest NASCAR weekend in town.

“It’s very special when someone so successful reaches out to us, and really wants to help make an impact,” said Williams. “It really shows how humble they are. It shows how much they love their community. I wish Joey the best of luck in the future, and hopefully he wins all his other races.”

On Sunday, Logano will be competing for the NASCAR Spring Cup Series.

For more information about Joshua’s Heart Foundation, click here.

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