Giving the Basics

Faces of kids, surrounded by the Kansas City skyline, peered out from posters on the walls. The posters are just simple images, but filled with the expressions not always seen and cries of help not always heard. They transformed the warehouse into a center for mission. Mission was the goal, the focus. The night of October 22, the mission of Saint Paul’s Outreach (to bring faith alive in young adults) joined with the mission of Giving the Basics to provide basic necessities to the Kansas City community.  

At the end of a long work day, twelve women from SPO chose to spend a Thursday evening in service of the community. Who are they? Leaders in schools, clinics, hospitals, and offices in the Kansas City area. In short, young professionals. They put their skills to good use to give neighbors a chance at living with dignity. This is faith alive.

Living faith is a joyful thing. The women laughed and chatted as they unloaded, sorted, and counted basic hygiene products from local drives. “Fifteen rolls of toilet paper!” “Four bars of soap!” were called out and recorded before being added to the piles of toilet paper, shampoo, toothbrushes, feminine products, and other basic products. They’re not care packages, but individual necessities sent to schools and shelters.

Theresa Hamilton, the founder of Giving the Basics, pointed to the posters and to handwritten thank you notes as she told of a teenage girl without friends at school because her family couldn’t afford to buy deodorant. Kids at school were mean to her because no one wanted to stand close to her, to get her to “go away.” This was just one of the stories of true need. With the help of Giving the Basics, the young girl can now go to the nurse’s office and choose a stick of deodorant, instead of a prepackaged handout. Dignity in action means providing a choice. Giving the Basics offers a way to meet the need, to change the stories.

The joy continued as the women re-gathered at the apartment of an SPO Missionary. Thank you to PureSilk for sponsoring the hospitality! In just a few hours, a foundation of sisterhood was built, a few more basic necessities got one step closer to changing the lives of real families in the community, and God was loved through neighbor. This story is just a taste of living life on mission with and for each other, and it’s not such a terrible way to spend a Thursday night.

"Living faith is a joyful thing"