Missouri soup kitchen treats diners with dignity

A soup kitchen in Kansas City, Missouri, has relaunched its program to make it possible for the people it serves to dine with dignity. The Kansas City Community Kitchen serves lunches from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. weekdays and will now offer restaurant-style service for diners.

In a press release from Episcopal Community Services, ECS President/CEO Beau Heyen said, “This new service represents what we’re about now. Our diners will not only get delicious, beautiful meals created by our amazing culinary team, but they will have the dignity of being able to choose what they want to eat.”

Now when diners come in for a meal, volunteers will serve as hosts and hostesses and wait staff.

According to the release, in addition to giving diners a choice about what they eat, menus are varied to incorporate various fresh foods and suggestions made by the diners themselves, although often made into healthier versions.

“Last week we had guests asking us when we were going to do some barbecue,” executive chef Michael Curry said. “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.”

For more information about the Kansas City Community Kitchen, go to episcopalcommunity.org.

According to its website, Episcopal Community Service is a nonprofit organization dedicated to fighting hunger in the Greater Kansas City area, both in providing healthy food and in empowering the poor to move beyond the barriers of poverty with dignity. It has been operating for more than 25 years and operates several food programs including the Kansas City Community Kitchen, a network of emergency food pantries and church meal programs, food rescue and the Culinary Cornerstones Training Program.