190614-SAFETY

Food for Kids and the St. Joseph Fire Department held a fire safety training program for kids Thursday.

Area youth got a lesson in escaping a fire at a special program Thursday morning.

Food for Kids, a Midtown summer youth feeding program, and the St. Joseph Fire Department hosted a fire safety program at 19th and Messanie streets. The Fire Department not only brought along a fire truck and volunteers, but also a “smoke house” fire simulator to give kids a hands-on experience on what to do in case of a fire in their home.

The fire simulator housed in a trailer had a smoke machine and fake stove and fireplace fires to show kids how to deal with such situations.

Shelia Gilbert, who along with her husband, Kenzie, founded Food for Kids, said they try to feed kids educationally as well as nutritionally.

“We have lots of fires in the summer and the fall, kids being at home by themselves, leaving a stove half on and playing with matches, lot of them don’t have electricity (and are) using candles, so if anything burns they should know exactly what to do,” Gilbert said.

This is the 12th year Food for Kids has been feeding hungry youth. A water party is planned for July, and a turkey giveaway will be held in the fall.

For more information on Food for Kids or to donate to its mission, call 816-364-5809 or 713-514-2843.

Alonzo Weston can be reached

at alonzo.weston@newspressnow.com.

Follow him on Twitter: @SJNPWeston.