Oregon Food Bank, Inc.
Rating: 5 stars 1 review
Issues: Civil Rights, Food, Human Services
Location: PO Box 55370 Portland OR 97238 USA
Oregon Food Bank (OFB) is a community-based 501 (c)(3), non-profit organization dedicated to eliminating hunger and its root causes… because no one should be hungry.
The challenge of collecting and distributing enough food to keep pace with need – 57.8 million pounds Network-wide last year -- has grown as sources of food shrink. In response to the down economy, food industry donations have dropped as retailers tighten inventory-to-sales ratio.
Outcomes: More food purchases, particularly bulk commodities such as rice, oats and beans. These provide nutrition for food boxes and serve as vital projects for growing volunteer numbers. The goal: processing 825,000 pounds of bulk commodities in the Volunteer Action Center.
Increased collections through Fresh Alliance, the retail perishable food rescue program operated with several major grocery chains. The goal: 2.3 million pounds.
Increased deliveries to Regional Food Banks to expedite movement of food into the system and, ultimately, into food boxes for hungry families.
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I love volunteering for Oregon Food Bank. I have gone with school groups and with my children, and here's what I love about it:
* It's easy. A very personable coordinator explains what the task for the day is (measuring rice, re-labeling product packaging, sorting potatoes), and the volunteers get right to work. It is very organized and the tasks are simple.
* I feel very productive. I've been in other situations where the volunteers are standing around, looking for something to do next -- and it can make me question how much I'm really helping.
* It's fun! Each table of volunteers figures out the best way to work together and gets into the groove. Good music is playing, and it's fun to chat with the other volunteers while you work.
* It's great for kids. It is amazing how hard these kids work! And they often get into little competitions to see who can pack the most food. I also like that it reminds them that there are so many less fortunate people, and that they can help.
* I FEEL LIKE I'M MAKING AN IMPACT. At the end of the shift, the coordinator tells us how many pounds of food we've packaged and how many people it will feed. I'm always stunned to hear how many people in Oregon are food insecure, and it feels good volunteer for an organization who's mission is to end hunger.
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