DARIEN, Conn. -- JoAnn and Sal Latorraca have embraced numerous community causes during their tenure as owners of The Waters Edge at Giovanni’s in Darien. The philanthropic Stamford couple’s current initiative is to support Kids In Crisis.
Through the month of March, The Waters Edge will donate 100 percent of the proceeds from purchases of items on its children’s menu to Kids In Crisis. The Cos Cob non-profit faces a $750,000 funding gap after Gov. Dannel Malloy cut $63.4 million from the Department of Social Services in November. Kids In Crisis lost $900,000 in state aid in 2012.
Kids In Crisis is the state’s only organization providing free, round-the-clock crisis counseling and temporary shelter for infants, children and teens. Last year, the facility served more than 6,000 children -- an average of 17 per day.
“Kids In Crisis provides a critical need for children who need a safe place to stay,’’ JoAnn said. “We’re happy to offer any assistance to them. We realize the vital part that Kids In Crisis plays in our community, and has done so since 1978.”
Sal and JoAnn succeeded her father, Giovanni Gabriele, in handling daily operations at the restaurant several years ago. Following Giovanni’s template, Sal and JoAnn have donated Thanksgiving dinners, hosted parties and contributed finances and donations to many other local organizations.
“We enjoy being part of the community and supporting the people that live here,’’ JoAnn said. “We feel that it’s our obligation to do what we can to lend a hand to agencies such as Kids In Crisis.”
“We are grateful for The Water’s Edge at Giovanni’s and so many other local organizations for their support of Kids in Crisis and their commitment to helping our children during this time. Their contributions will help Kids in Crisis continue providing critical programs and services to children and families in Fairfield County that need help," said Shari Shapiro, Executive Director of Kids in Crisis.