Every meal can make a true difference. This community of volunteers dedicated to the homeless make this truly happen every day.
When you enter the Kansas City Community Kitchen, you might find yourself wondering if you’ve made a mistake and entered a restaurant. No need to get confused; you’re at the right spot. They serve hot meals restaurant-style to the homeless with waiters, greeters, with a big helping of warmth, good cheer, and respect.
“We are trying to flip the photo of what a soup kitchen looks like,” shares Mandy Caruso-Yahne, director of community engagement at Episcopal Community Services, which runs the kitchen.
— Episcopal Community (@ECS_KC) February 11, 2016
The Kansas City Community Kitchen has been filling bellies and warming hearts for over 30 years, but a number of volunteers felt they could do more to make their guests feel better. On February 5 2010, The Kitchen opened its doors to a new look. Lace flowers bloom on burnt umber walls, and the bright airy space brings a heart good cheer. This newly designed space is thanks to Jennifer Bertrand, an Olathe resident and a season three winner of HGTV’s Design Star.
The meals themselves are exquisite, with equal foundations on taste and nutrition. Michael Curry, executive chef and over of the Kansas Restaurant Lil’ Bubba, saw to the creation of the menu. This man truly has a passion for food over profits, and sees this as a way of giving back to the community, as he once lived in poverty and ate at soup kitchens himself.
#KCCK lunch: Citrus marinated roast leg of lamb w/ yogurt chimichurri, mashed cauliflower and potatoes, sauteed asparagus and fresh fruit with Farm to Market bread. So proud of the meals that our team puts out. This is what we’re trying to do – put out restaurant quality meals for ANYONE to enjoy. We hope you’ll consider coming down and eating lunch with us. #notjustasoupkitchen
A photo posted by Episcopal Community Services (@ecs_kc) on
Curry not only injects his compassion into the meals, but also is also keen to listen to the soup kitchen’s guests’s comments and suggestions. “Last week we had guests asking us when we were going to do some barbecue,” he said in the press release. “So when we prepared our chicken a couple of days later, we decided to make it into pulled chicken sandwiches with our house-made sauce that doesn’t have as much sugar and salt.”
The homeless who come dine at The Kansas City Soup Kitchen certainly feel the love. “It’s different,” Brian Oglesby, a homeless man who dined at Kansas City Community Kitchen told The Kansas City Star. “They’re treating me good, like they don’t know I’m homeless.”
To the tireless volunteers at the KCSK, more power! May your tribe increase, and may you keep going strong!
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