Today we’d like to introduce you to Andres Novoa, owner of La Cocina Mexican Restaurant & Catering located in Richmond TX just minutes from the Pecan Grove area. Andres Novoa is more than a successful local business owner. He is a husband, father, and is also a profound advocate for local senior citizens.
The original La Cocina opened in 1997 in Rosenberg, serving authentic fresh Tex-Mex cuisine, proudly cooking with the best quality ingredients. 19 years later we are now serving from our Pecan Grove location in Richmond, TX. At La Cocina you will find authentic hand-made flour tortillas, award winning fajitas, and magnificent margaritas that will bring you back time and again. Our unique approach to preparing fresh food sets us apart from all others.
Andres has devoted himself, and his restaurant to what he calls “a great and noble cause” – The Fort Bend Seniors Meals on Wheels, a local non-profit dedicated to providing meals and other free services like transportation and home repair to local senior citizens. “Our seniors shouldn’t be without”, said Novoa. “Especially because most of them have done so much for our great county.”
More than a decade ago, Novoa, who was at the time just getting into his groove at La Cocina, discovered there were local seniors who were in need of services that most people did not give a second thought about, like food delivery, wellness checks and simple conversation. The news not only shocked and appalled Novoa, it motivated him to take action. “I immediately said, not our seniors. Let’s do something. Let’s crush hunger!” said Novoa.
Tell us about the annual Cinco de Mayo Bash
ON the fifth anniversary of La Cocina’s opening, Andres started a tradition that has continued to flourish. “I wanted to do a big party, a charity fundraiser”, said Novoa about La Cocina’s inaugural Cinco de Mayo Bash. “With the help of our community, we throw a big festival party where we feature live bands, raffles, and live auctions with direct donations from neighbors, friends, and small businesses in the community of Fort Bend County.”
The Cinco de Mayo bash has raised more than $350,000 since it’s inception for Fort Bend Seniors. The bottom line is not the money, though, Novoa stresses. It is spreading the word about a continuous support for local seniors. “We not only raise money for our seniors, but we also create awareness, volunteerism and community involvement by delivering meals to our elderly by people who not only deliver, but provide social interaction. So many of our seniors are lonely and that volunteer is the only person they may see or interact with.”
The thought of a senior in need hits home for Novoa, whose 84 year old mother lives far away and needs attention and services. In Novoa’s mind, every senior is somebody’s mother, somebody’s father, someone who is loved.
In December, Novoa and La Cocina play a role in another important Fort Bend Seniors initiative called Secret Santa. This holiday event is a senior gift giving program in which Fort Bend Seniors provides ornaments – each one featuring a senior’s name and what he or she wants for Christmas. Novoa hangs ornaments on the Christmas tree in his restaurant, where patrons can have the option to pick an ornament and purchase the fits for the seniors. “No senior goes without a present on our watch!”, Novoa said.
What are you most proud of as a business owner?
While he says his business is “built around a great product”, what Novoa is most proud of is “giving back and being involved in the local community”. “Businesses have a duty to give back to the community in any way they can.” “Our community is gorgeous, it is dynamic and it is a big family because people are willing to give back. That is what makes Fort Bend County different. Volunteering is crucial to me because I care deeply about my community.”
Get in touch with Andres:
La Cocina Mexican Restaurant & Catering
515 FM 359
Richmond, TX 77406
Sunday – Thursday: 11am – 9pm
Friday – Saturday: 11am – 10pm
Serving Breakfast, Saturday/Sunday: 8am – 12pm
Here at My Fort Bend, we love to share the amazing stories of local business owners with the community of Fort Bend. If you know someone who deserves recognition, please email email@example.com
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