OFB has been busy with immediate emergency food distribution as well as bigger picture, larger conversations on a local, state and even national level.
OFB Network asks legislators to make food a priority, invest in Oregon Hunger Response Fund
More than a hundred food bankers from every corner of Oregon converged on Salem today to deliver more than a thousand paper plates, each filled with a message from a constituent (see examples above) and to ask legislators to invest in the state’s partnership with the Oregon Food Bank Network through the Oregon Hunger Response Fund.“It takes the commitment and resources of all sectors – public, private and nonprofit – to fight hunger in Oregon,” says Susannah Morgan, CEO, Oregon Food Bank. The Oregon Hunger Response Fund is the state’s contribution to the public-private partnership to fight hunger. It supports 20 regional food banks and more than 900 partner agencies with an annual budget of $1.1 million at time when request comes at a time when demand for emergency food continues to climb. The OFB Network is poised to distribute more than 80 million pounds of food for the third consecutive year.To fulfill growing requests for emergency food, the OFB Network is asking the Legislature to increase its investment in the Oregon Hunger Response Fund by $375,000 annually. This investment will allow the Oregon Food Bank Network to provide the same level of food to the many families that are still struggling with hunger.In an average month, more than 260,000 Oregonians eat meals from an emergency food box. Most people seeking emergency food are unemployed, underemployed, disabled, seniors or families with children. More than a third of those eating meals from an emergency food box are children. Even though the economy is slowly beginning to improve, Oregon’s unemployment rates remains above the national average.“It takes time for Oregonians who have lost their jobs, savings, health care and homes to get on their feet again,” says Morgan. “We expect the need for emergency food to continue at high levels for some time come.”
We are hopeful that we made an impact on April 18, 2013! Thank you for your continued interest and support.
OFB's 2011-12 Annual Report has been published. Arnie Gardner, Oregon Food Bank Board Chair addresses the challenges and changes we faced and will continue to face for years to come.
"In FY 2011-12, we continued our leadership role in the fight against hunger by digging deeper. As our lagging economy forced more and more families into poverty, our commitment to innovative programs and strategic planning powered our ability to provide hope and help where it was needed most."
To support our efforts to increase the nutritional quality of the food we distribute, OFB was selected as one of 12 food banks in the nation to participate in the “Healthy Options, Healthy Meals” program, a partnership with MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger. Enhanced receiving systems and staff processes now allow OFB to track the nutritional content of food in greater detail. The two-year nutrition evaluation and policy pilot also laid the foundation for partnerships — whenever possible — with our food donors to prioritize food that is low in fat, sugar and sodium.
Our project aims to purchase emergency food but now we face the challenge to evaluate the nutritional value as well as cost. Our soup/chili costs will be higher when we choose the low sodium, lower fat options and your donations make this possible.
Since my last report your donations have allowed us to purchase over 50,000 lbs of shelf-stable nutritionally- sound food for emergency food distribution. Thank you!
OFB's 2011-12 annual report was just published. Arnie Gardener, Oregon Food Bank Chair, shares his thoughts:
Challenge and change. Over the past year, these words were at the forefront of our efforts as Oregon Food Bank faced record levels of hunger in our region and bid a fond farewell to Rachel Bristol, our founding CEO, who retired in June.
With your generous support, OFB, the OFB Network of Regional Food Banks and our partner agencies distributed 81.7 million pounds of food — the equivalent of 68 million meals — to families and individuals who needed a helping hand. This staggering figure underscored the overwhelming need for emergency food in our region. But we know that distributing emergency food is only a partial solution to the problem we face.
In FY 2011-12, we continued our leadership role in the fight against hunger by digging deeper. As our lagging economy forced more and more families into poverty, our commitment to innovative programs and strategic planning powered our ability to provide hope and help where it was needed most.
Our good work over the past year was made possible, in no small part, thanks to Rachel Bristol. During her 29 years of service,her tireless vision and tenacity guided OFB to become a highly respected, national model of collaboration and innovation. As we wish Rachel well on her retirement, we’re pleased to welcome Susannah Morgan, a committed, dynamic CEO who is excited to move us forward and build on OFB’s accomplishments.
It’s been a challenging year for Oregon Food Bank and the clients we serve. But your overwhelming support helped us bring immediate help to our neighbors in need and allowed us to focus on long-term solutions to fighting hunger at its root causes.
Your donations to this project helped distribute over 200 emergency food boxes to families in need since my last report. Thank you!