PORTLAND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- Fast-moving wildfires have forced thousands of Oregonians to leave their homes and businesses behind in search of safety, with a growing number learning there is nothing to return to.
With 21 regional food banks and more than 1,400 pantries and meal sites throughout Oregon and Southwest Washington, the Oregon Food Bank Network serves as a pillar of disaster response efforts in the Pacific Northwest.
Our partner agencies are on the front lines, providing emergency support to affected communities — including water, food and other critical supplies.
For communities affected by wildfires and for those hoping to help in disaster response efforts,Oregon Food Bank has compiled resources and information at oregonfoodbank.org/wildfire-response.
FOR INDIVIDUALS AND FAMILIES IN NEED OF ASSISTANCE
Know that food and water remains available to those who need it. Though several Oregon Food Bank Network partners have been impacted by wildfires in various parts of Oregon, the vast majority of our 1,400 pantries and meal sites remain open during this ongoing crisis. Many offer contactless pick-up or delivery options for high-risk individuals or those without transit options.
Find local food distribution sites at OregonFoodFinder.org. Contact local agencies for the most up-to-date distribution information.
INFORMATION FOR SUPPORTERS WHO WANT TO HELP
Food insecurity in Oregon has doubled since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic — and local wildfires are creating an even greater need for emergency food assistance. Donations help local families, farmers, ranchers and first responders in affected communities throughout the region. There are two primary ways to support hunger relief efforts at this time:
- For individual supporters: The logistics of sorting and processing smaller quantities of consumer-donated supplies are prohibitive at times when an immediate response is needed. The most effective way to have an impact is through financial support of efforts to distribute emergency food, water and supplies. Interested volunteers can find local pantries and meal sites that may be in need of support at OregonFoodFinder.org.
- For farmers, manufacturers and other food industry partners: Bulk water and non-perishables are needed in affected communities — especially shelf-stable, culturally versatile items like rice, beans, canned vegetable/fruits, canned meats, etc. Industry partners can submit bulk donation information online or call (971) 230-1674 for additional details.
“Our communities already faced a hundred-year flood of hunger from the pandemic, and ongoing wildfires are making things even worse for thousands of our neighbors,” said Susannah Morgan, Oregon Food Bank CEO. “Yet our hearts are beyond full as communities come together to respond to this disaster. And through continued generosity and strong partnerships, I’m confident that we’ll have the resources needed to emerge stronger together.”
About Oregon Food Bank
At Oregon Food Bank, we believe that food and health are basic human rights for all. We know that hunger is not just an individual experience; it is also a community-wide symptom of barriers to employment, education, housing and health care. That’s why we work on two fronts in our mission to end hunger in Oregon: we build community connections to help people access nutritious, affordable food today; and we build community power to eliminate the root causes of hunger for good. For more information, visit oregonfoodbank.org.