Cover Photo: Boy Scout Troop #46 have been collecting non-perishable food items from residents in the Mayfair neighborhood for the past 14 years, come rain or shine. Photo courtesy Nancy Day.
Scout Troop 46 benefits Red Bridge community
By Kathy Feist
A boy scout stood before the congregation at St. Peter and All Saints Episcopalian Church after spending a winter’s night sleeping outdoors in cardboard boxes with his fellow scouts. They still smelled of smoke from the campfire and a little rumpled from the long night. Each scout related what he had learned from the experience, which replicated homelessness. “I understand how helpful it is to have warm socks and shoes that don’t have holes,” related one.
“I learned you may not know that one of your friends or neighbors is struggling to have enough food and clothes. You should never criticize how someone dresses,” observed another.
“I learned that no matter how little you have, you can always give to someone,” said one boy scout. “Collecting food is just one way we can do a little to help others.”
Nancy Day, a scout leader for Troop 46, says it is one of her most heartwarming memories. Many of the boys in the troop come from families that may themselves struggle financially. “The things they observed from that were very amazing,” she recalls.
This year, the troop, which includes nine boys ages 12 to 16, collected nearly 300 items from residents in the Mayfair neighborhood for the Souper Bowl of Caring food drive held on February 1. The items went to the Red Bridge Food Pantry at the First Baptist Church of Kansas City, 100 W Red Bridge Rd.
The troop has been collecting items for the pantry the Mayfair neighborhood located near Red Bridge and Holmes since 2006, long before Souper Bowl of Caring which began nationally three years ago. The collection was started by troop leader Brian Thurn and was led by him until his death in 2016. The troop continues to honor Thurn’s memory each year with the neighborhood collection, come rain or snow.
In addition to collecting for the food pantry, the Troop has collected pledges during their Night-in-a-box campout which they have endured through all sorts of winter weather for the past eight years. The $1 pledges made by family and friends are donated to the Outreach Committee of St. Peter & All Saints, with whom the troop is affiliated.
This year, some of the scouts from Troop 46 will be volunteering at the congregation’s Shrove Tuesday pancake feed held February 25 from 5 to 7:30 pm. The church is located at 100 E. Red Bridge Rd. As you go through line collecting your stack of pancakes and sausage, be sure to to the boys for the troop’s hard work for the Red Bridge community!