Spire funds new community kitchen in Independence, MO

Community kitchen will help new homeowners experience cooking nutritious meals

Image of Spire employees at community event

Shaylyn Dean and Steve Mills pose with a portrait of school founder EH Young.

Families and individuals in need of a hand can partner with Truman Heritage Habitat for Humanity to build or improve a place they call home. Habitat homeowners help build their own homes alongside volunteers and pay an affordable mortgage. 

 Truman Heritage Habitat for Humanity opened a new headquarters and Homeownership and Opportunity Center at the newly remodeled historic Hiram Young School in Independence, MO.

The school, which was established by EH (Hiram) Young in 1874 and moved to its current location in 1934, was the first all-black school west of the Mississippi River. Young, who was born enslaved, became a successful businessman, bought freedom for himself and his family and was a strong supporter of education for African-Americans.

Now, the building will provide new opportunities for participants in the Habitat for Humanity homeownership program to attend classes focused on successfully owning and maintaining a home. It will also serve as a community gathering place, with spaces for local organizations or businesses to use, a museum to highlight the building’s unique history, and a space for events. The Life Skills Center in the Gymnasium will be available for the community to reserve for trainings, workshops, cooking classes and more.

Spire provided a financial contribution to the project to update the onsite kitchen. The Spire Community Kitchen includes modern gas appliances and will serve as a gathering place for new homeowners and others to hone their culinary skills and cook nutritious meals while experiencing the convenience, reliability and affordability of natural gas.  

Image of Spire employee at community event

Shaylyn Dean in the Spire Community Kitchen.