Pre-teen starts pantry to feed Wayne County neighbors
When she learned that nearly one in five people in Wayne County are uncertain about where their next meal is coming from, 12-year-old Kenzie Hinson decided to do her part to help solve that problem.Posted — Updated
"I volunteered at a couple of other food banks, and I decided I wanted to start my own," Kenzie said.
"When I'm having a bad day or something, they come in, give me a hug. I know everybody by name when they walk through the door," she said.
Kenzie's mother, Paige Hinson, said the food pantry was all her daughter's idea.
"We taught her to pay her blessings forward," Hinson said. "She picks things that are important to her, and this is what she chose."
Kenzie is getting some help to do this important work. Food Lion has donated thousands of meals over the past year, and, earlier this month, Tyson Foods surprised her with a commercial freezer to store food and a $20,000 check.
The need in Wayne County is growing, and Kenzie says her food pantry will keep growing to serve those families. She wants it to be a bright spot in their lives.
"It's more than just food," she said. "It's how you make people feel when they walk through the door. You can stop hunger one meal, one family at a time."
Kenzie is hoping to raise enough money to buy land and start a sustainable farm so that Make a Difference can provide a steady supply of fresh produce for families.