January 7, 2011
Inaugural events this week are celebrating new state leadership, but in the current economy, many Kansans have little reason to celebrate. That's why Governor-Elect Sam Brownback says he's using his inauguration to highlight Kansas charities. He also says his team is cutting costs when it comes to the inaugural events themselves.
Today, an inaugural event at the Kansas Food Bank highlighted new leadership while also highlighting hunger.
"Hunger's a tough issue, and hungry kids is a really sad issue because they can't control their circumstances," said Kansas Food Bank President and CEO Brian Walker.
That's why Governor-Elect Sam Brownback says he spent one of his last inaugural events packing boxes for the food bank's "Food-4-Kids" backpack program.
"We live on this, I mean awareness is what makes hunger go away. If folks aren't aware there are hunger issues in their community, those issues will never go away," said Walker.
Today's event was the last stop on Brownback's "Heart of Kansas" tour. It was a tour full of inaugural events showcasing charities, and therefore, the challenges Kansas is facing in the current economy.
"I want to send a message that people are in difficulty and we want to help out. We want to do everything we possibly can in that circumstance," said Brownback.
That's why Brownback says from his charity inaugural events, to the invitations to his inaugural ball, his team is keeping costs down.
"It's our hope that we're going to have some significant amount of funds left over to give to charity," said Brownback.
In the past, extra funds from the ball have gone to the Governor's mansion in Topeka. But Brownback says he wants to change that tradition in order to send a message.
"That the ball not be about us, the gala not be about us, but it be about trying to help Kansas," said Brownback.