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Thank You Las Cruces Home Builders Association

February 24, 2015
MaxMax Bower, Gabe Anaya, Gabe Chavez and Kimball Hakes

L-R  Max Bower, Gabe Anaya, Gabe Chavez and Kimball Hakes

February 12th 2015 was a great day for 13 non-profits in Las Cruces,  El Caldito Soup Kitchen being one of them. The Board of Directors of El Caldito Soup Kitchen would like to  THANK the Las Cruces Home Builders Association for awarding us $5,000 to be used on improvements and kitchen needs. Special thanks to outgoing president, Kimball Hakes,  for coming up with the idea to build and sell a house using the profits to donate back to the community.  This being the Las Cruces Home Builders Association’s 55th year, they named the house the 55th Anniversary House. It was hoped that they would have profits totaling $55, 000.  However, this organization was able to realize $64,000 to DONATE!!!

Builders logo

Mission Statement
Chartered in 1959, the Las Cruces Home Builders Association is comprised of members of the building industry and its affiliates. As the voice of the building industry, we serve our members and the community by:
• Promoting balanced economic development;
• Providing education; and
• Promoting professionalism
The Las Cruces Home Builders Association remains committed to improving our community’s quality of life.

About 250 people attended the luncheon where 13 non-profits were honored with awards.   The campus of the Mesilla Valley Community of Hope were pleased to have 4 individual agencies honored.

Please enjoy our photos.

Casa Peregrinos

Casa de Peregrinos

Builders Community of Hope

Mesilla Community of Hope

Builders Jardin de Los Ninos

Jardin de Los Ninos

Gabe with large group

Gabe Chavez being recognized with some of the other recipients.

Builders Nicole and Lorenzo

Can you tell they were excited!!!!

Again KUDOS, to the Las Cruces Home Builders Association, for  a job well done.

Welcome our new Food Service Manager…Martin Nanna

February 7, 2015


 Our new Food Services  Manager…Martin Nanna


Working with a SMILE!!!

Working with a SMILE!!!


Martin began his new job just before Christmas jumping in with both feet.  He has been working hard ever since and we on the board appreciate all he has done for us.


Martin and Friday Team 006Martin tells his story…

I was born and raised in the rural farming community of Scotts Valley near Santa Cruz, California.  I am  a graduate of Cabrillo Community College and hold five certifications from the California Department of Water Resources through California State University at Sacramento. I moved to Phoenix, Arizona in 1989 where I held employment with municipalities as a Public Works and Wastewater Treatment Director. Thereafter, I began my next career in non-profit organizational management with the St. Mary’s Westside Food Bank as Director of the State Program for Seniors. I graduated from the University of Phoenix with a Bachelors of Science degree in Health Administration and I am an MBA graduate candidate at Post University. After spending some ten years developing and guiding food banks in Phoenix, I transitioned into the retail grocery industry, which ultimately brought me to Las Cruces..
Managing people and processes are among my principal skill sets. From preparing food as a baker to a cook or a deli guy, I enjoy creating and preparing healthful and hearty meals for the needy. I have championed efforts involving advocating for seniors, the homeless, and single mothers as an unregistered lobbyist of these paramount causes.
This is a snapshot of my story. I believe everybody has a story, one just has to listen. Here at El Caldito stories abound and so does the heart of this organization, the story of feeding people.


Teresa and Martin

Teresa and Martin


Martin pitches in helping with any job, even emptying the trash..

He and his wife of 15 years Anita Martinez live in Mesilla, New Mexico with their youngest child Aria, who attends Zia Middle School. Collectively with Anita, a paralegal and tax preparer, he has six children and three grandchildren. In his free time Martin enjoys tending to his organic garden, reading, listening to opera and spending time with his family and pets. 

We look forward to meeting his family and getting to know them too.


January 22, 2015

On January 11th El Caldito’s Board members got together for a potluck dinner and a fun gift exchange. Lots of laughter and great food.  Of course…. we do cook meals for our clients everyday.

Jerry, Wil and Sonnie

Jerry, Wil and Sonnie

Jerry and Sonnie were wonderful hostesses. Getting together with them at their home is always relaxing, warm and fun.


The Chicken !!!

The Chicken !!!


Bob had one dead  BIRD!!!

Sorry for the blurriness..I couldn’t stop laughing at this outrageous CHICKEN!

Is it a snowman, a necklace or collapsed wreath...?

Is it a snowman, a necklace or collapsed wreath…?

 You decide!!!

What's in this box?

What’s in this box? I only find peanuts and plastic bags.


I forgot to take a photo of the contents.  It was a canister/cookie jar. Use your imagination!!!


Rose and Gabe part of our Wednesday Team!!

Rose and Gabe part of our Wednesday Team!!


Well we are almost through the month of January.  We hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and are on track for a great 2015!!! 

Don’t forget to donate to us throughout the year. Your support is invaluable!!!




Richard leads the Christmas Team

January 8, 2015
Richard gathers with some of the beverage volunteers.

Richard gathers with some of the beverage volunteers.


Richard Lohmeyer over saw the food preparations and the volunteers who came Christmas day to help serve dinner at El Caldito Soup Kitchen.  At the end of the day about 300 people had a wonderful Christmas dinner of ham, mashed potatoes, dressing, rolls, corn, cranberry salad and dessert. Not many restaurants were open on Christmas Day, so we were happy to be able to give back in a special way to people who didn’t have a place to eat. Christmas is a time for giving and we and El Caldito were blessed to be able to open our doors and to give to others. 


3 settng up steam table


Donut Lady


Potato lady


Serving close up 2


Serving Close-up


Many of the foods and dishes, we were able to prepare were due to the help of our local community.  Businesses, Churches, Families and Individuals donated food and money to help make Christmas Dinner a success!!!


Dining Room


Martin helping


Tray Lady


A talented Group!!!

A talented group!!!


What would Christmas be without music?  These young people sang a variety of Christmas Carols, while people ate their meal.


dishwasher team


As the afternoon went on our faithful dishwashers kept up with the trays.   Their jobs didn’t end when we stopped serving.  We thank these people for helping us too.  As we enter 2015 we would like to wish a Happy New Year to all and may each of you enjoy  HEALTHY and HAPPINESS!!!








Volunteers do whatever We ASK!!!

December 6, 2014

Mothers of Preschoolers International or MOPS, is a non-profit organization geared at the mothers of young children. Our moms are stay-at-home, working and single moms. However, MOPS Next and MOPS Teens focus on older children, too. Through local chapters and meeting groups moms are encouraged to come together where they participate in parenting workshops, can attend conventions and lectures and simply make new friends. A faith-based group, members explore their relationships with God and Jesus Christ as it relates to their parenting. There are two local chapters in the Las Cruces area of MOPS and MOPS Next.


Mothers of Preschoolers come to help wash cans.

Mops MOMS come to help wash cans.

Sometimes the kitchen receives pallets of items.  Right now, we have many crates of soda cans which are dusty and dirty.  On Saturdays we provide sack lunches to go.  Each sack lunch contains two sandwiches, a small bag of chips/salty snack and a small bag of cookies.  When we have extra fruit, such as apples, oranges or bananas we give out those too.   As for beverages, depending on the season, we hand out coffee, ice tea, water and or cans of soda.  Thanks to our volunteers we have been able to work on getting the soda cans cleaned on the outside so that we can use them on a Saturday.


While our preschool Moms wash cans our younger volunteers color lunch sacks for our youngest clients.

While our preschool Moms wash cans our younger volunteers color lunch sacks for our youngest clients.


Our youngest  clients like choosing decorated lunch sacks.

Our youngest clients like choosing decorated lunch sacks so we thank Arabella and Erica  for decorating sacks.


Diane Benson brings her Grand Children to the kitchen to volunteer.

Diane Benson brings her Grand Children to the kitchen to volunteer.

The Benson Family came two weeks after the Preschool Moms did. We still had cans to wash.   You never know what jobs we might have for you to do.  We have very little time to do a job like this during the time the kitchen is open.  Our regular crews are busy preparing food and serving our clients.


Clean CANS!!!

Clean Cans!!

We appreciate what these two groups did for us.  THANK YOU!!!!

Go to and sign up to volunteer!



Blessings to ALL … You made Thanksgiving Special!!!

November 30, 2014
People kept coming!

People kept coming!


Our Mission at El Caldito is to FEED the HUNGRY!!! We do that every day of the week, but holidays are unique!   We try to make the meal and the day more significant for those in need. It might be the only time that,  our guests have others around who show they care and  offer a kind word.  It is important that PEOPLE reach out to help PEOPLE!  This Thanksgiving,  Co-Chaired by Ann Palormo and Teresa Phillips was no different, both of them gave of themselves and truly made this another wonderful, blessed experience for all.   Thank you both!

Donations came in all during November.

Donations came in all during November.


Thank you to the businesses, families and individuals who graciously gave.

Preparing the dressing.

Preparing the stuffing.


We couldn’t have done it without our volunteers.

Into the oven it goes.

Into the oven it goes.


Getting the salads ready.

Getting the salads ready.


Decorating the dining room.

Decorating the dining room.


Lovely arrangements.

Lovely arrangements were on display..


Antipasti too!!!

Antipasti too!!!


We're ready for the PEOPLE>

We’re ready for the PEOPLE.


T'Day2014 Filling the trays


T'Day2014More in serving line


T'Day2014 Desserts readywith people


T'Day2014 Enjoying dinner

Teresa talks to the reporter from ABC7.

Teresa talks to the reporter from ABC7.

There is something very special about Thanksgiving at El Caldito. So much sharing – donations from all segments of the greater Las Cruces community, individuals signing up to prepare, serve or clean up that traditional Thanksgiving feast served to everyone who walks through the doors.

Teresa Phillips and I had each played small roles in previous years so when Donna Wood approached us to co-chair this year’s dinner, we somewhat naively said, “Sure,” not really knowing all that was involved. Fortunately there is a lot of “institutional knowledge” to draw on to insure that everything runs smoothly.

One hundred individuals volunteered their time and talents during the week. Some were “old timers” contacted and signed up for specific tasks – cooking turkeys, carving turkeys, making gravy and stuffing, serving desserts, preparing drinks, greeting volunteers as they walk through the doors.

Some agreed to try new responsibilities – chairing vegetables preparation, making mashed potatoes, preparing salad and relishes. Some came as teams – to carve turkeys, fill spaces on the serving lines, working in the dining room and pitching in for the all-important cleanup crew. Some showed up Wednesday afternoon and Thanksgiving morning simply saying, “what can I do to help?” And then going to work wherever they were needed.

What was so wonderful to see was how quickly these separate groups became teams all playing toward one goal – treating all our guests to a memorable meal. Thanks to everyone for your individual and collective contributions.

Sure, we were really tired at the end of the afternoon but it was a very satisfying kind of tired. A special thanks to the “Gabes” who were on hand most of the day for moral support and to answer questions we didn’t know to ask before we needed an immediate answer. Another special thanks to Donna for never being more than a “text” away.

Ann Palormo and Teresa Phillips


Mesilla Valley Christian School Helps Out in a BIG WAY!!!

November 10, 2014

El Caldito  Soup Kitchen was blessed with 5 hardworking students  and one parent volunteer for the morning.  These 6 people worked non-stop.  However, this is just part of the story.  Enjoy the photos of the work they did in our kitchen and read what the whole school did on November 7, 2014.

THANK YOU!!!  L-R  Joe, Dalton, Zach. and Jeremy Mrs. Rig and Abby

THANK YOU!!! L-R Joe, Dalton, Zach. and Jeremy Mrs. Rigg and Abby



These students and their chaperone spent from 9 AM to 11:30 AM helping in our kitchen.  They changed jobs periodically and did what ever we asked them to do. It is always nice when you work with a group of respectful and polite students.


We kept these two students busy drying dishes.

We kept these two students busy drying dishes.


We prepare salads daily, so tomatoes needed to be cut.

We prepare salads daily, so tomatoes needed to be cut.


More salad prepping.  Fresh green beans adds a touch of crunch to our salad.

More salad prepping. Fresh green beans adds a touch of crunch to our salad.



Mesilla Valley Christian Schools is a K-12th grade private school celebrating 40 years in the Mesilla Valley.  The Helping Hands Serve-a-thon is an annual event where the all the students K-12th grade, faculty, staff (and even some of the parents) volunteer in the community to perform community service.  On November 7th, 2014 three hundred  MVCS students and their chaperones participated in 23 very meaningful projects helping others across Las Cruces. The list of projects is below.  It’s a great way for our students to learn the importance of helping others.  The Serve-a-thon is also a fundraiser for our school in which families, friends, neighbors and corporate sponsors have generously donated to support our Serve-a-thon day.

Here is a list of our projects:

1.     Kindergarten – Homemade cards for the Military Soldiers overseas

2.     1st grade & 6th Grade– Operation Christmas Child

3.     2nd grade – Making cards and singing at The Heritage Assisted Living

4.     3rd and 4th grade –Brown Bag Blessings for Aristocrats Nursing Center

5.     5th  grade –  Serving Lunch at Gospel Rescue Mission

7th-12 Grade students:

6.     El Caldito Soup Kitchen

7.     Casa de Peregrinos

8.     Jardin de Los Ninos

9.     Roadrunner Food Bank

10.  New Covenant Fellowship -clean out the ditch that runs along their property

11.  Golden Mesa & Good Samaritan(19- in choir singing and 17-band performing)

12.  Bible Studies by Mail

13.  Safe Haven Store

14.  King’s Treasure

15.  Mesilla Park Elementary / Cesar Chavez Elementary -25 student readers

16.  Project Linus

17.  Loaves & Fishes

18.  Codes Enforcement Center  Yard work for the elderly

19.  Greater Las Cruces Chamber of Commerce –

20.  East Side Senior Community Center –  Make Thanksgiving center pieces with the seniors.

21.  Habitat for Humanity Restore

22.  Turning Point

23.  Lunches for the homeless at Tent City

Congratulations to the school for really taking VOLUNTEERISM to a new level.

El Caldito appreciates your HELP!!!


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