Eva Tapanes Bakes Cakes for a Cause

Founder, Cakes for a Cause

When Gables resident Eva Tapanes was 10, her parents sponsored an immigrant family from Cuba in their move to Florida. Over two years, Tapanes watched the family, including their five-year-old son, struggle to assimilate to life in the U.S. and get the legal help they needed to remain in America. In the end, the family was forced to return to Cuba after being unable to secure the necessary documents.

“It was devastating forme,” Tapanes says, as she watched the boy who had become her little brother ripped away. “I didn’t understand why they had to go back to the place they were so desperate to escape.”

Now a junior at Carrollton School of the Sacred Heart, Tapanes has taken that experience and used it as fuel for her philanthropic journey. Her Cakes for a Cause nonprofit raises money through bake sales for organizations that help sponsor immigrant refugees. The teen is also planning a career in immigration law, already working as an intern for an attorney on her days off.

Eva Tapenes

Latest Achievement

Cakes for a Cause has already raised over $3,000 and Tapanes says she’s on track to reach $12,000 by the end of the year. “All the proceeds go toward organizations that are dedicated to helping immigrants and refugees assimilate into South Florida, with a specific focus on legal documentation,” she says.

She recently donated $1,000 to Catholic Legal Services and is also involved with the Society of Saint Vince de Paul, which has assistance programs for migrants and low-income individuals. Her bake sales are primarily at her school and St. Dominic’s parish but she also takes orders through her Instagram, @cakesforacause_byeva.

What She Says

“Through that experience [of sponsoring an immigrant family], I got to see firsthand the struggles that immigrants go through in order to become citizens of our country. It’s what eventually inspired me to help other families in similar situations to assimilate into our community and hopefully lessen some of the burdens they experience. I’ve always loved baking, so I decided that if I could combine my passion for helping immigrants and refugees and my love for baking, I could make an impact.”

Read about other notable Gableites in our People section.