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McPhersonSentinel - McPherson, KS
  • ReUse It Center donates to lunch program

  • After the call went out last week the Summer Lunch Program needs funds in order to provide food to needy children, ReUse It Center stepped up Tuesday with a $1,000 donation.
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  • After the call went out last week the Summer Lunch Program needs funds in order to provide food to needy children, ReUse It Center stepped up Tuesday with a $1,000 donation.
    The Summer Lunch Program provides food during the summer for children who qualify for free or reduced-cost lunches during the school year. The program is feeding about 205 children from 75 families this summer.
    In past years, the program had been supported by a golf tournament sponsored by the Waldhauer Memorial Fund. However, organizers decided not to stage the tournament this year. This left the Summer Lunch Program severely underfunded.
    In years past the program had provided food boxes until school started in August. This year the program will only go through the end of July. In addition, the program was forced to cut fresh fruit from its food boxes.
    Even with the cuts, the program needed $1,000 to provide food through the end of July.
    The ReUse It Center is a nonprofit organization that takes donations of building materials and households goods, sells them and gives the proceeds to other nonprofit agencies.
    LeRoy Schmidt, ReUse It board chairman, said he saw a story in The McPherson Sentinel about the lunch program’s need and rallied ReUse It Center officials to donate the funds.
    “I saw that,” he said of the newspaper article, “and it jumped out that this is what we are all about,” Schmidt said.
    Kirchner said others in the community also stepped forward to make donations to the McPherson County Community Foundation on behalf of the program.
    The lunch program is run exclusively by volunteers, which means 100 percent of donations go toward purchasing food.
    Any money raised above the $1,000 needed to complete the summer will go toward supporting the program next year.
    Donations are still be accepted. They can be made to the McPherson County Community Foundation at 206 S. Main St., McPherson, KS 67460. For more information, call 620-245-9070 or 1-866-245-9070 or email info@mcphersonfoundation.org.
    “I have found that whenever there is a need in this community and we make it known, the community finds some way to take care of it,” Kirchner said.
    Kirchner said she met with the United Way board Tuesday, and members discussed how to permanently support the lunch program. Some of the ideas discussed include looking for businesses to support individual weeks of the program and looking for ways to cut the cost of the items placed in the program’s food boxes.
    The Summer Lunch Program is only one of many programs the ReUse It Center has supported since it was founded three years ago.
    Some of the other charities supported include Churches United in Ministry, Operation Warmth, the Omega Project, Mt. Hope Sanctuary, Circles of McPherson County, McPherson Food Bank and Habitat for Humanity.
    Page 2 of 2 - The ReUse Center accepts donations of building materials, nonupholstered furniture, appliances, tools, landscaping items, household items, antiques and metals, such as aluminum, brass and copper.
    The center keeps items that can still be used out of the landfill and leverages its funds with other nonprofits to help individuals in the community, Schmidt said.
    The center is growing quickly and pushing the limits of it current space. Schmidt said the center has about 10,000 items currently in stock.
    The center, 1060 W. Kansas Ave., is open noon to 4 p.m. Tuesdays, 4 to 8 p.m. Thursdays and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays.
    Those interesting in volunteering can call 620-245-0122 or 620-242-7008. Visit www.reuseitcentermcpherson for more information on the center and it services.

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