Twenty-five percent of McKinney students are facing food insecurities on a daily basis. Hungry students are typically less-successful students. The ripple effect that hunger has follows our little ones into adulthood. A group of community volunteers have decided to stop talking about hunger in McKinney and instead, do something about it: They will be building the Community Garden Kitchen at Holy Family School.
The Community Garden Kitchen will be a 4,500-square-foot, free-standing building adjacent to an existing preschool centrally located near downtown McKinney. The land for the facility has been provided by the preschool’s owner, the Episcopal Diocese of Dallas; architectural and design work has already been completed.
The building will consist of a lunchroom/gathering space, commercial kitchen and restroom facilities. During the day, the kitchen will serve the students attending school.
But it doesn't stop there, after school hours, the kitchen will serve the community by providing a safe, welcoming environment where people enjoy nutritious food and fellowship. Educational and life skills classes (including nutrition and meal preparation) and support for religious services are all part of a comprehensive approach to ending hunger in McKinney.
The “garden” in the Community Garden Kitchen is a powerful component of the mission. Located adjacent to the planned building, the garden will be more than just a local purveyor of fresh produce, it will supplement the educational programs and encourage sustainability.
McKinney has spoken loudly in support of the concept by celebrating a sold out fund-raising event at Sugarbacon Proper Kitchen. The event included live entertainment, food, drinks and local art won by lucky guests.
Angela Poen, President of the Community Garden Kitchen, is optimistic about the impact that the kitchen can make on the underprivileged population in McKinney.
"For the past 63 years, Holy Family School has carried on the original mission of its founders, Father Jose de Jesus and Maria Vega, which is: To ensure that students were kindergarten-ready, healthy, happy, and active. The Community Garden Kitchen will go beyond that and serve those in need.”
The Community Garden Kitchen is seeking volunteers and donations. Learn more at communitygardenkitchen.org. Donations can be mailed directly to:
Community Garden Kitchen
McKinney, TX 75070