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Annual Summer Program Provides Free Food for Kids

Simply called "Food For Kids," this grassroots effort to feed the children in one Midtown neighborhood has been going since 2009.
(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) A grassroots effort to feed children in one St. Joseph neighborhood began its fifth year Tuesday.

Simply called "Food For Kids," the brainchild of Shelia and Kenzie Gilbert is nothing more than a picnic table and a few tents on the 19th block of Messanie.

Food For Kids provides free lunches to 150 children in that area.

It began in 2009, when the Gilberts aimed to feed around 25 kids that lived near their church.

The program begins serving at 11:00 a.m., but Shelia Gilbert says on the first day the kids started showing up as early as 7:30.

All the food provided comes from free will donations by people and businesses near their neighborhood.

"It takes a village to raise these children. So people are going into their cupboards, they're going into their pockets, they're going into the stores, and they're coming out and bringing us the food items to put together.  Kenzie and I are doing the Lord's work, making it happen," Ms. Gilbert said.

Food For Kids sets up at the Messanie location through the summer months Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
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