Mid-Continent Public Library offers food for the needy with Food - KCTV5

Mid-Continent Public Library offers food for the needy with Food for Fines program

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Donations go to local food pantries and charitable organizations across the Kansas City area.donations go to local food pantries and charitable organizations across the Kansas City area. (KCTV5) Donations go to local food pantries and charitable organizations across the Kansas City area.donations go to local food pantries and charitable organizations across the Kansas City area. (KCTV5)
KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -

Many people who have an overdue library book sit at home and dreading returning it.

But a new program is finding a way to use overdue library books to save some money and help people in need.

It's called “Food for Fines.”

Right now, at any Mid-Continent Public Library, people can return overdue library books with a can or box of food in place of every dollar they owe.

The donations go to local food pantries and charitable organizations across the Kansas City area.

Kris Dyer, Assistant Brand Manager at the Blue Ridge Mid-Continent Public Library, says the libraries have been running the program twice a year for the past three years.

Last spring, the Food for Fines program was so successful, the libraries collected a record-breaking 12,175 items.

And this year they're hoping to help even more people.

“We're hoping people can donate canned meats, canned fruit, boxed meals like Hamburger Helper, macaroni and cheese, that sort of thing,” Dyer said.

Donated items can be dropped off at any of the 31 branches from Tuesday until Sunday.

Donations must not be expired, damaged, or in a glass, plastic, or cardboard drink container. The box must still be closed and the food must be nutritious.

Each donated item will count as one dollar toward any fines or fees, up to $10.

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