FORT SMITH, Ark. (KFSM) — Some overnight vandals left a mess for the River Valley non-profit, Antioch for Youth & Family. Now they have to replace a door during a time of year when they are gearing up to help make sure families have enough food for the holidays.
“We have an all-volunteer staff, our food is free to the public, and that’s very disappointing for us to look at the cost of replacing the door when we are so very kind to the community,” Charolette Tidwell said.
Antioch for Youth & Family is the largest food assistance pantry in west-central Arkansas, and they moved their food pantry into their new location on north 32nd street back in May and are still working on renovations.
“It’s a minor setback, to say the least, but it’s a more disturbing one than anything else. Why someone would do something so senseless to us, given what we give to the community is beyond imagination,” Ken Kupchick said.
Ken Kupchick says they hit a record in September helping more than 18,000 thousand people, and with the holidays just weeks away, they are sure to help even more.
“This building has been put together mostly with licks, promises and in kind donations, one of which was Arkansas Glass and Mirror who in the first place donated the entire storefront to us. Now we have to turn around and replace their kind gift in order to move forward,” he said.
Finding the broken glass this morning didn’t stop Antioch Executive Director Charolette Tidwell from delivering food to more than 100 people this morning and going to the food bank this afternoon, so they can help even more people tomorrow. She hopes someone out there will tell police who did this.
“All money that we have go into the food distribution, and we don’t leave any one of our facilities without being served, so God be with them,” she said.
The door has been replaced, but they are asking that if anyone would like to cover the cost of the replacement to please let them know. They are also always in need of donations, especially this time of year.
The Fort Smith Police Department says they are investigating this incident, but right now, they have no suspects, and there isn’t a surveillance video of the crime.