PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — September is Hunger Action Month, and KOIN 6 News is taking a stand to end hunger in Oregon and Southwest Washington.
One of the easiest and most fulfilling ways to get involved is by volunteering. The Oregon Food Bank relies on hundreds of volunteers to check donated items for food safety and distribution.
Last year, OFB served 1.7 million people and distributed 120 million pounds of food.
CEO Susannah Morgan says the food bank has scaled back their volunteer shifts because of COVID and it’s a safe place for you to give your time.
“We encourage people to sign up for shifts, to help us sort and manage food,” Morgan said.
Volunteers spend time at pantries like the one at Portland Open Bible Church on SE 92nd Ave.
“Everybody that you’re looking at right now are here volunteering. And it’s been wonderful because Oregon food bank has sent us. A lot of volunteers. We have had a huge need,” Executive Director of the Portland Open Bible Community Pantry Betty Brown said.
Dr. Mary Frazel volunteers with her family.
“My two daughters and my husband and I decided to start to volunteer in terms of, COVID wanting to give back to the community. And we looked up on Oregon Food Bank. They directed us to this location,” Dr. Frazel said. She is now the volunteer coordinator at the pantry.
“So we make a hundred bags of produce. So we have to calculate approximately how many pieces of corn and how many pairs and how many onions and how many carrots, things like that going each of the a hundred bags.”
As summer comes to a close, volunteers have started to dwindle.
“People have gone back to work. And so the need for volunteers for us has become bigger than ever greater than ever at this point,” Brown said.
The Oregon Food Bank does so much more than packing food. If you are looking for a volunteer opportunity, they can find one just for you.
Click here to join KOIN’s donation drive efforts for the Oregon Food Bank.
Click here to learn how to volunteer for the Oregon Food Bank.
Click here to learn more on how to take action and advocate for those experiencing food insecurity.
Click here if you’re experiencing food insecurity to enter your zip code to find food near you.