COLORADO SPRINGS — A homeless chef in Colorado Springs just turned into a food truck owner. It's thanks to a national effort to make people's dreams come true, one wish at a time.
The Dream Machine Foundation and its team are on tour and traveling the country to help as many people as they can. They visited Colorado Springs and ran into Tony Rojas, a homeless chef who's dream is owning a food truck. With the help of the organization, his dream came true.
"We just fell in love with him and he started crying, but we looked into his eyes and this man, there's something special here about this man," said Charlie Rocket, who runs the foundation.
The interaction was shared in a video on Tik Tok, and the video got more than 35,000,000 views in 24 hours.
In the video, Rojas says "I just want to cook food for people. I just don't want to give up."
The foundation then asked Rojas to cook something special for them. They took him grocery shopping to buy all of the ingredients.
"Tony is kind of a genius, he thought of his idea that has the internet going crazy and it's called a nacho taco," said Rocket.
Rojas lost his job during the pandemic. For the past 18 months, he's been living in a van with his wife. The foundation also paid for a hair cut and new clothing.
To help get Rojas fulfill his dreams and his wife get off of the streets, the foundation set up a fundraiser to bring the community to America the Beautiful Park so people could try the nacho tacos. It happened Sunday evening.
A couple hundred people showed up for the event. Thousands of dollars poured in, in donations, and support came from communities across the country. Before the event, the foundation also surprised Rojas with a $40,000 food truck to call his own.
"It's surreal. It's like a baseball player going from triple A to the majors. You're in the big show now and it's time to perform and watch all these smiles who are waiting," said Rojas.
Rocket said, while homeless, Rojas never stopped chasing his dream.
"Tony is so special, even though he's homeless we can't judge people based upon where they're at in life because he was knocked down," said Rocket.
For Rojas, he was able to manifest his dream, by sharing it and telling others.
"For all of y'all that's watched my video, thank you for making me happy," said Rojas.
The foundation also set a goal of raising $100,000 for Rojas and his wife. The money is going toward paying for the food truck, and a place for him and his wife to stay for a year at no cost. He'll also have the chance to focus on his new food truck business. The foundation has raised $50,000 so far.
During their visit, the foundation also made two others wishes come true for people in Colorado Springs. One was a woman who makes jewelry and wanted to expand her business. The other is an air force veteran who wants to own a mobile bar.
For more information about the foundation and how to donate, click here.