Jack and Kitty Williams Make a Difference at Ozarks Food Harvest
Do opposites attract? For Jack and Kitty Williams, that certainly seems true. The couple has been married for 50 years. When asked for two words to describe themselves, Jack was “slow and steady” and Kitty was “fast and furious.” Although these descriptions sound opposing, their complementary tendencies are the perfect combination to keep the Williams involved in their communities.
Now retired, Jack and Kitty continue to live fruitful lives, and the two wasted no time getting involved in activities that bring them joy. Between grandkids – and now great-grandkids! – doing their own lawn work, nursery and trustee board duty at church, hobbies, and volunteering at SPS schools, the Williams keep busy. Four years ago, they decided to add one more good cause to their schedules: Volunteering at Ozarks Food Harvest!
Jack and Kitty’s two-word descriptions, slow and steady and fast and furious, have lent them consistency and drive that has greatly benefitted The Food Bank. Since 2019, Jack and Kitty have each invested more than 175 hours of their time volunteering at Ozarks Food Harvest. They attend sort-and-pack sessions every Wednesday, and occasionally assemble Weekend Backpacks on Saturdays.
As a retired educator, Kitty has personal experience with children facing hunger. Having worked for Head Start and Title 1 Schools in Springfield, she has seen first-hand what Weekend Backpack Programs can do. “I remember kids that lived in cars or grandma’s garage,” she shares, “I personally know the kids who take these home, and because of these, they’re getting better snacks than Doritos and pop.”
Several health scares have reinforced the Williams’s commitment to give back to their community. Despite a heart attack, stroke, and cancer, Jack arrives at Ozarks Food Harvest every Wednesday ready to serve his neighbors. Kitty attributes their dedication to service to a lesson from the Bible: The poor will be with us always, and we need to care for one another. “We worked hard in our careers and were blessed. We have the ability and health to give back. We’re blessed to be able to volunteer,” they explain.
The Williams say they enjoy Ozarks Food Harvest so much that they will continue to give their time for as long as they’re able, and we’re so glad to hear it! Dedicated volunteers like Jack and Kitty make it possible to serve thousands of neighbors facing hunger in southwest Missouri. If you, too, want to be a part of ending hunger in the Ozarks, visit ozarksfoodharvest.org to see how you can help!