Or better yet, I would've given Neelix and Kes whatever they needed so that they could destroy the Caretaker's array after I used it to get home.
Wouldn't have worked. The Caretaker died before he could send them home, and the Kazon were attacking the Array. Voyager
didn't have enough firepower to prevent the Kazon from capturing the Array, and if that had happened, it's likely they would've shielded it against attack. So the crew wouldn't have had the opportunity to either use it to go home or destroy it once that happened. They had to destroy it in that brief window before the Kazon captured it.