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McKinney Nonprofit Serves 50,000 Meals To Those In Need

CGK has provided between 150-175 meals every evening since opening

Since June 2022, Community Garden Kitchen (CGK), began its mission to provide freshly prepared, nutritious meals to individuals experiencing food insecurity. March marks a significant milestone as CGK is set to reach a total of 50,000 meals served. 

CGK provides between 150-175 meals every evening, a figure that has steadily increased since its opening. 

“We serve a diverse range of guests, including senior citizens, veterans, the homeless and working families who are just trying to make ends meet during challenging times,” said Angela Poen, president of CGK. “For many, this may be their only opportunity to have a home-cooked style meal, or to gather and socialize in a friendly neighborhood restaurant.”

A decade ago, Poen and several others discussed local hunger, astonished by the revelation that over 48,000 children in Collin County faced uncertainty about their next meal. They also uncovered the absence of any establishment in the county where individuals could obtain a meal without needing to provide information or documentation. Out of this conversation emerged the idea for CGK.

Volunteers drive various essential tasks, playing pivotal roles in prepping, cooking, organizing and maintaining cleanliness, while the dining room crew warmly welcome, seat and serve all guests seeking hospitality and sustenance. Dining with dignity is the motto at CGK.

One Collin County mother explained that her daughter, who struggles with addiction and mental health issues, frequents CGK. 

“Tonight, she took me to dinner there,” the mother told CGK. “She was so proud of herself; I think she felt like she was treating me. And it was a treat! The food was delicious, and the atmosphere is so cheerful. What an amazing place [they] have created. So many people treat my daughter with contempt. CGK treats her with dignity and kindness.” 

Beyond its meal services, CGK collaborates with partner agencies to distribute donated food, amounting to a total contribution of 54 tons to date. This collective effort expands the organization's assistance to individuals and families in need beyond its direct beneficiaries.

No inquiries or documentation are necessary. Situated at 501 Howard Street in McKinney, CGK warmly welcomes guests Monday through Thursday, delivering restaurant-style service in a compassionate and inclusive atmosphere to all seeking sustenance.

The sack lunch program also ensures meals are available during the day for day laborers and individuals experiencing homelessness. 

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