Photo credit: Grandma's Cheesecake Sandwiches
The interior of the Grandma's Cheesecake Sandwiches shop in Whitestone

With the cold winter upon us, a Whitestone dessert business is urging the community to help to keep homeless individuals warm this season.

Grandma’s Cheesecake Sandwiches founder and baker Lisa Cotoggio announced the first annual Warming the Hands of the Homeless drive. Cotoggio encourages patrons to donate new and gently used gloves and mittens during the month of December. On Dec. 25, the company will distribute all donations to the less fortunate.

Those interested in making a donation can do so at Grandma’s Cheesecake Sandwiches Bake Shop at 12-40 Clintonville St. during regular business hours — Monday to Saturday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The bakeshop promises one plain cheesecake sandwich to each person who makes a donation. Each donation is good for one cheesecake sandwich per person for the duration of the drive.

This is not the first time Cotoggio has extended a philanthropic hand to the community. On Nov. 28, Grandma’s Cheesecake Sandwiches donated cakes to women living in a College Point homeless shelter in the spirit of Thanksgiving.

“A special something extra to make the women living in the new homeless shelter on 20th Avenue and 127th Street in College Point feel more human because that’s what they are, and we should understand that there are times when people are down on their luck, and just need a helping hand to get back on their feet,” Cotoggio said.

Back in February, Cotoggio challenged people to be kind to the homeless for Valentine’s Day. The Hearts4Homeless Valentine’s Day Challenge involved donating over 150 heart-shaped cheesecake sandwiches to homeless individuals in Manhattan and Long Island.

Cotoggio, who is currently a Bayside resident, opened her first brick-and-mortar shop in September 2019. The renowned desserts are based on her grandmother, Raphaella’s, recipe.

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