Bloomington family steps up to help the homeless in Minneapolis

There is an ever-present need to help people without a place to call home, especially on cold winter nights. In the Twin Cities, a Bloomington family has made that their personal mission, especially after the recent closures of several homeless encampments.

"They didn’t wake up and say I want be homeless, so the fact that they’re going through things, why not put a smile on their face?" Tynika Smith said. Over the last seven years, alongside her daughter Zekarhia, their duo has been the answer for hundreds of people in need.

"Me and my daughter do about 120 meals [per day]" Tynika explained. "I am a giving person, I love to help when I’m able to, and then also teach my kids not to judge." 

A Bloomington family is going above and beyond to do what they can to help people living in homeless encampments during the brutal winter in Minnesota. (FOX 9)

Every Sunday Tynika is out on the fringes of society, feeding our cold and hungry neighbors. On New Year’s Day, Tynika and Zekarhia cooked a warm breakfast and handed out fresh clothes, supplies, and medication.

"It makes me happy seeing they get coats and things they need," Zekarhia told FOX 9.

Tynika receives text messages outlining what each community needs, "They ask, you have any more coats, any more tents? So they give specifics on what they need; versus people just dumping junk off that they don’t need," Tynika said. Then she delivers, using donations chipped in by generous donors in Richfield and Bloomington.

It’s also a large investment in time, but the return on investment is much greater. And Tynika believes anyone can do it.

In 2023, she hopes to open a "free store," where those in need will be able to come and take whatever they need, in their time of need. Tynika can be reached by email.