A Mother's Day surprise for a very special mother

KEYT and "The Inn Crowd" honor CALM employee with Mother's Day breakfast.

Joe Buttitta, KEYT - KCOY - KKFX Anchor/Reporter, jbuttitta@keyt.com
POSTED: 03:45 PM PDT May 11, 2013    UPDATED: 09:57 PM PDT May 11, 2013 
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. -

Sagario Ruiz raised two daughters on her own while coming face-to-face with unimaginable challenges.

Ruiz is a survivor of abuse and homelessness. At one point, the family was living out of Ruiz's car.

With a job that forced her to work nights and weekends, taking her away from spending time with her daughters, Ruiz applied for a job with the CALM organization. Even now she admits she wasn't qualified, but CALM's executive director Cecilia Rodriguez took a chance and hired Ruiz as CALM's receptionist.

"When she came to CALM we hired her. She could work daytime, she could be with her children and family in the evenings," said Rodriguez. "And at CALM, now she's the welcoming presents."

In honor of Mother's Day, KEYT and "The Inn Crowd" surprised Ruiz with breakfast made by The Ballard Inn executive chef Budi Kazali.

"We're celebrating by surprising her with a little breakfast," Kazali said. "She doesn't know we're coming so it should be fun."

Kazali walked up to the door, knocked, and when Ruiz answered she was floored by the gesture.

"I was surprised," Ruiz said. "I wasn't expecting this, it made my day."

From everyone at NewsChannel 3, Happy Mother's Day.