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Oregon Food Bank Board approves phase two of OFB West Capital Campaign

February 10, 2010
Author:
Jean Kempe-Ware, OFB public relations manager
Topics:
OFB West Capital Campaign , OFB General
PORTLAND, Ore. (Feb. 10, 2010)OFB’s “Fight Hunger, Feed Hope” capital campaign to create Oregon Food Bank West has marched past the half-way mark toward its $8.5 million goal.

With the first phase of construction well underway and campaign funding on track, OFB Board of Directors unanimously agreed to move forward with phase two of construction of Oregon Food Bank West in Washington County.

“I’m thrilled to see construction progress and to witness our vision take shape,” says Rachel Bristol, chief executive officer, Oregon Food Bank. “The board’s decision to complete the project in its entirety instead of in two separate phases will save us $150,000. This great news means – if we successfully complete our capital campaign – we can hit the ground running this summer with a fully operational food bank to help the growing number of people who are hungry in Washington County and throughout the state.”

Phase one focused on truck docks, warehouse space, offices, freezer, cooler and a temperature-controlled room for processing perishable food.

Phase two adds spaces to engage and educate the community:

• Volunteer Action Center,
• Nutrition Education Kitchen,
• Learning Garden classroom,
• two community meeting rooms,
• entry hall
• and equipment.

Currently, OFB serves Washington County through a leased facility in Hillsboro with two small warehouses, minimal food-packing space, limited parking, an outdoor food pick-up area that is exposed to the elements and a dilapidated freezer. The current lease expires July 2010.

OFB plans to move out of the Hillsboro site and into its new facility in June and to complete the entire project by August 2010.

“We’re about to make our dream a reality,” Bristol says. “With the tremendous increase in need for emergency food, the urgency to complete Oregon Food Bank West has never been greater. Hunger can’t wait for a better economy. We need the support of the entire community to help make Washington County a better place for businesses, workers, children and families.”

Oregon Food Bank West will help address the rising need for emergency food not only in Washington County but throughout the statewide network of 20 regional food banks and 935 direct service programs and agencies stretched across Oregon and Clark County, Wash.

Oregon Food Bank West will:

• triple current storage and processing capacity, enabling Oregon Food Bank to increase food distribution in Washington County from 3-million to 4.5-million pounds per year.

• serve as the nucleus for volunteer repack of nutritious perishable food recovered through farmers, food processors and retail grocers through OFB’s Fresh Alliance program.

• reduce the cost of outside processing of frozen foods by $125,000 per year.

• triple its volunteer pool in Washington County from 4,700 to 15,000 volunteers per year over the next three to five years.

• help make OFB even greener by keeping more food out of the waste stream and by enabling large corporate volunteer groups – that are now bussed from Washington County to northeast Portland – to come to a building in their own backyard.

• improve the safety and efficiency of distribution to the current 100 hunger-relief agencies in Washington County and allow OFB to expand service to areas of unmet need.

• strengthen OFB’s ability to serve as a first responder in local and statewide disaster relief.

• expand OFB’s education and outreach programs (Nutrition Education, Learning Garden and Advocacy).

• provide cost-effective distribution options for serving northwest Oregon.

• support OFB’s statewide network. About 30 percent of the facility and new food processed will support the statewide network.

How to help

To donate to Oregon Food Bank West, contact Rachel Bristol, CEO, Oregon Food Bank, 503-419-4190, rbristol@oregonfoodbank.org.

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