KC mom starts mini ‘food pantry’ on corner where neighbors can take what they need

This is Our KC

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Residents in one Kansas City neighborhood are making sure their neighbors don’t go without during these trying times.

On the corner of 70th Terrace and Holmes in Brookside, not far from Waldo, sits what used to be a kid’s storage container.

“It’s really unassuming,” said Angela Kmeck, the woman behind the idea.

She pulled it from her backyard and started the 70th Terrace Pantry.

“It’s kind of a free-for-all as you can see,” she said, pointing to the items inside the bin. “There’s a lot of can goods, pasta.”

The mom of two wanted to help her neighbors who might be feeling helpless during the pandemic.

“It’s been amazing,” she said about the response.

On Monday, the pantry was lower than usual, but Kmeck said it shows the need is there.

“I think a lot of people aren’t used to asking for help,” she said. “Our country is not used to asking for help. A lot of us try to pull up that bootstrap, but I think it’s times like this we realize we really need each other.”

Neighbors donate whatever items they have, and those in need take what they want. No questions asked, no gratitude expected.

“There’s been some teary moments when we’ve seen people kind of quietly creep up and take a couple of bags, and we know they’re feeding their families,” Kmeck said. “And to be able to see that, it’s just heartwarming.”

Her only request is that those dropping off or picking up use gloves – and the hand sanitizer that’s provided – to prevent spreading germs.

“We’re always like wash your hands after you touch it,” Kmeck said.

Kmeck’s hoping the small gesture will inspire other neighborhoods to do something similar. She said she will keep the pantry out as long as it’s needed.

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