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Homeless Camp Proposal | Artist Wes Benson

Courtesy of Wes Benson
Kansas City based oil painter and illustrator Wes Benson says he paints what he finds beautiful.

The Downtown Council proposes ways to help Kansas City's homeless population, and a Kansas City artist shares a deeply personal story about overcoming addiction.

Segment 1, beginning at 4:49: The Downtown Council is proposing a temporary camp to help Kansas City's homeless.

The homeless population in Kansas City could be approaching Great Depression levels because shelters can't take in as many people during the pandemic. The Downtown Council has stepped into the breach by supporting a series of organizations that help the homeless and proposing a temporary homeless camp near the Paseo.

Segment 2, beginning at 28:54: How a Kansas City artist found his path to surviving addiction.

After a long battle, Kansas City artist Wes Benson conquered his addiction to opioids. Today, he runs a secular AA group called “Freethinkers,” aimed at helping people empower themselves to recover from addiction. He also sponsors several addicts and cautions them not to backslide during a pandemic, when it’s especially easy to do so.

When I host Up To Date each morning at 9, my aim is to engage the community in conversations about the Kansas City area’s challenges, hopes and opportunities. I try to ask the questions that listeners want answered about the day’s most pressing issues and provide a place for residents to engage directly with newsmakers. Reach me at steve@kcur.org or on Twitter @stevekraske.
Chris Young is an Assistant Producer for KCUR’s Up To Date. Contact him at chrisy@kcur.org.
Whether it’s something happening right now or something that happened 100 years ago, some stories don’t fit in the short few minutes of a newscast. As a podcast producer for KCUR Studios and host of the podcast A People’s History of Kansas City, I help investigate questions and local curiosities in a way that brings listeners along for adventures with plot twists and thought-provoking ideas. Sometimes there isn’t an easy answer in the end – but my hope is that we all leave with a greater understanding of the city we live in. Reach me at mackenzie@kcur.org.