The first Fred Meyer store opened on the corner of SW 5th and Yamhill in 1922. Around that same time the Sunshine Division was forming with police officers helping to get food to families in need.
Fred Meyer Corporate Affairs Director Jeffery Temple told KOIN 6 News the relationship between Sunshine Division and Fred Meyer started in the very beginning by Fred Meyer himself. He realized the company needed to help make a difference in the community.
“At Fred Meyer we’re celebrating our 100 year anniversary and Sunshine Division is now celebrating their 100 year anniversary,” Temple said. “What’s incredible is that we’ve been working together in partnership basically the whole time, so it’s very special and something we’re proud of here at Fred Meyer.”
That support has included food donations, but it’s largely been financial support. When the pandemic hit, they helped fund Sunshine Division’s newly launched home delivery service.
“During the pandemic, they realized there were so many hungry people in our community who couldn’t get to the pantries to get food for their households, so they created a brand new solution of delivering food for people who couldn’t get to the pantries,” Temple said. “They came to us to ask to get that underwritten and we were able to provide that for them. So it’s incredible Sunshine has delivered about 86,000 meal kits throughout the community, something that I think is really incredible and shows the value of Sunshine to our community.”
Fred Meyer also got Sunshine Division a refrigerated truck to increase their fresh food capacity. Shoppers can also contribute when checking out at Portland Fred Meyer stores by rounding up your purchase.
“Those nickels and dimes may not seem like much, but they add up to so much,” Temple said. “That’s how we’re able to do a lot of the funding for Sunshine Division and the work we do in the community.”
Fred Meyer also has donation bins for Sunshine Division in its Portland stores. They support Sunshine Division every year during the Shop with a Cop event, providing free items and deep discounts.