Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs recently participated in IDignity’s 5th Annual Souper Douper Fundraiser, an event that raises funds and awareness for the organization whose mission is to restore dignity and hope to the disadvantaged in Central Florida. Held at the Historic Ballroom at Church Street, this annual event features a “Soup Off” competition that includes various organizations from Orange County.
“My family and I have supported this wonderful organization for years. We were so excited to share my son Chase’s recipe for his delicious loaded baked potato soup, which turned out to be a real crowd pleaser,” said Mayor Jacobs, who has attended the event for the past three years. “I was honored to join our citizens and community partners for such a worthy cause and look forward to partnering with IDignity on future events.”
Other participants included Ian Fuller, Assistant Coach of Orlando City Soccer; Jim Colbert, Radio Host for Real Radio 104.1; John Noonan, Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Orlando; Robert Pigman, Deputy Chief of Orlando Police Department; Sandy Shugart, President of Valencia College; Roderick Williams, Deputy Chief of Orlando Fire Department; and Vince Williams, Head Coach of the Orlando Solar Bears. Each participant submitted a specialty soup that was judged for taste, theme and uniqueness by event attendees.
"The success of IDignity's mission is dependent on the ongoing collaborative efforts of numerous government agencies,” said IDignity Executive Director Michael Dippy. “Together we are able to assist disadvantaged members of our community in proving their identity and thus empowering them to fully participate in our society.”
Mayor Jacobs treated guests to a loaded baked potato soup topped with sour cream, cheddar cheese, bacon and chives. Her son, Chase, helped her make the homemade soup from scratch, peeling the potatoes and chopping the bacon for all attendees to enjoy. IDignity’s 5th Annual Souper Douper Fundraiser boasted more than 350 attendees. The winners of the night included:
- Best Soup: Roderick Williams, Deputy Chief of Orlando Fire Department
- Best Theme: Teresa Jacobs, Orange County Mayor
- Most Unique: Jim Colbert, Radio Host for Real Radio 104.1
IDignity was created to assist the disadvantaged in the community to navigate the complexities of obtaining personal identification, such as birth certificates, Florida ID cards and Social Security cards. These documents are essential to fully participate in society and stricter identification regulations have recently been implemented by Homeland Security.
Since May of 2008, IDignity has hosted monthly events in downtown Orlando and has provided service to hundreds of clients, often having to turn others away due to capacity and funding limitations.
Last year’s Souper Douper Fundraiser hosted 370 guests and raised $90,000, which helped the organization continue offering their services and resources to those in need.
A collection of photos from the Souper Douper Fundraiser are available on Flickr for use by the media.