Recognized for FEAST program
(NASHVILLE, April 12, 2013)— Oregon Food Bank received a 2013 Innovation Award in food banking at the annual Feeding America Network Executive Directors' Forum this week in Nashville. Feeding America presents the award to the year’s most innovative programs from the 202 food banks across the nation in the Feeding America network.
Judges awarded Oregon Food Bank for its FEAST (Food, Education, Agriculture, Solutions, Together) program, an initiative that helps to create a "big tent" approach to food banking by empowering community members to build healthier, more equitable and more resilient food systems through a community organizing model.
During FEAST events, community members tell the story of their local food system and are introduced to community food systems organizing principles and language from throughout the area. Outcomes of the FEAST process have included partnerships between farmers and emergency food providers, new farm-to-school partnerships, new and expanded farmers’ markets, and the formation of food systems coalitions.
The FEAST program has also become a key strategy in the food bank’s work by building stronger, more-connected communities and mobilizing existing resources to improve local food systems and individual food self-sufficiency.
“Oregon Food Bank continues to show why it’s a leader in our Network,” said Bob Aiken, president and CEO of Feeding America, the nation’s leading hunger relief charity. “This award shows the innovation and creativity of the food bank’s staff to help fight hunger in their community.”
“We are thrilled to receive this national honor,” said Susannah Morgan, CEO, Oregon Food Bank. “I especially recognize the thoughtful work of OFB’s community food security team, Sharon Thornberry and Megan Newell-Ching, who have crisscrossed Oregon to introduce FEAST in more than 40 communities. The beauty of this model is that it builds on community empowerment and self-determination. It encourages people to envision – and bring about – what works best for their own special place.”
About Feeding America: Feeding America provides low-income individuals and families with the fuel to survive and even thrive. As the nation's leading domestic hunger-relief charity, our network members supply food to more than 37 million Americans each year, including 14 million children and 3 million seniors. Serving the entire United States, more than 200 member food banks support 61,000 agencies that address hunger in all of its forms. For more information on how you can fight hunger in your community and across the country, visit http://www.feedingamerica.org. Find us on Facebook at facebook.com/FeedingAmerica or follow our news on Twitter at twitter.com/FeedingAmerica.
About Oregon Food Bank: Oregon Food Bank believes no one should be hungry. With sufficient public will and support of the entire community, we believe it is possible to eliminate hunger and its root causes.
Oregon Food Bank collects and distributes food through a network of four OFB branches and 16 independent regional food banks serving Oregon and southwest Washington.
The OFB Network helps nearly 1 in 5 households fend off hunger. OFB also leads statewide efforts to increase resources for hungry families and to eliminate the root causes of hunger through advocacy, nutrition education, and helping communities strengthen local food systems.
For more information, visit www.oregonfoodbank.org.