When the pandemic caused Grace United Community Ministries’ food pantry to close for in house food distribution, they continued to find other ways to provide food to families, including dropping off groceries and sack lunches.

With their doors shuttered too, Grace United made the most of the down time and renovated their pantry, located in their 100-year-old building at 801 Benton Blvd in KCMO. It was seriously in need of an upgrade and thanks to community support that’s exactly what it got. Last weekend, the organization proudly hosted a ribbon-cutting event to showcase the remodeled facility, complete with new ceilings, new stairs, porcelain tile floors, new shelving and desks.

“The Grace United Community Ministries Board of Directors, staff and I wanted to provide a facility that will provide refuge and dignity to those who need food and to help ease the burden that many are facing because of financial distress, COVID-19 or other challenges,” said Jesse Barnes, executive director at Grace United Community Ministries.

Through volunteers and donations from donors including the United Way of Greater Kansas City, Harvesters, Church of the Resurrection and Country Club Christian Church, the new facility will continue to support low-income families providing food including dairy, produce, canned goods, bread, pastries, frozen meats and personal care items.

For the past 25 years, Grace United Community Ministries has provided food to more than 5000 people in the Kansas City area each year.

“When you’re talking about how we can build up our communities, it really is all of you,” said Mayor Quinton Lucas at the food pantry ribbon-cutting event. “I wish I could copy, quadruple all of you, because we have a lot of needs in Kansas City that you’re taking a big step in addressing.”

Grace United Community Ministries is taking food and cash donations.

Donate online at www. graceunitedkc.org or by mail at Grace United Community Ministries, 801 Benton Blvd., Kansas City, MO 64124.

If you are in need of food assistance, contact the Grace United Community Ministries food bank at (816) 231-5745 or email ajohnson@graceunitedkc.org. 

Jazzlyn "Jazzie” is the former senior reporter for our team, who joined the company in 2020 in the midst of the pandemic, through the Report for America service program. For the past two years, she covered...

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