KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Thelma's Kitchen is celebrating being in the community for three years by kicking off a month-long fundraising effort.
Every week in August, companies will set out to raise $5,000 and will challenge as many people in their network to match it.
The first week's sponsor is First Federal Bank, which already has helped raise $16,000.
Employees gathered Monday morning to box up lunches for the day and present their check.
"Stewardship and giving back is at the core of who we are, and our employees love getting together for opportunities like this," JR Buckner, First Federal CEO, said. "So this was just a great opportunity to give back."
Thelma’s Kitchen, which is part of Reconciliation Services and provides meals to people in need every day, wants to reach $40,000 by the end of the month. The funds will go toward more meals, as well as social and mental health services.
"When you have the ability to choose what you want – you walk up to the window, donate what you can, and choose from all the different salads and sandwiches – just the dignity of choice, and that's really what our sponsors are providing," Father Justin Mathews, executive director of Reconciliation Services, said.
People who want to help in a different way can buy tokens on the Thelma's Kitchen website, which are good for one free meal.