Oregon Food Bank: Jason Stephany
For Google.org specific inquiries: Chris Wilson
GOOGLE.ORG PARTNERS WITH OREGON FOOD BANK AS PART OF NATIONWIDE 50-MILLION MEAL EFFORT DURING HOLIDAY SEASON
Support from Google’s philanthropy and Feeding America will help deliver meals and fuel technology and infrastructure projects focused on long-term impact
PORTLAND, OR – Today, Oregon Food Bank announced a partnership with Google.org, Google’s philanthropic arm, and Feeding America® to help meet the rising need for food assistance today — and support longer-term efforts to end hunger at its roots through stronger technical infrastructure. The news was shared during an event at the food bank’s Portland warehouse with Google volunteers and elected officials in attendance.
The announcement is part of a larger initiative from Google.org and Feeding America to help provide 50 million meals* to communities across the United States. Today, 34 million Americans, including 9 million children, are facing food insecurity. Among Feeding America network food banks, 90% report an increased or sustained need in recent months.
“Too many of us are struggling to make ends meet with the rising cost of food and housing, now layered on top of the ongoing economic impact of COVID-19. The communities bearing the brunt of this impact have faced disproportionate hunger and poverty for generations: People of Color, immigrants and refugees, single moms and caregivers, and our trans and gender-diverse neighbors,” said Oregon Food Bank CEO Susannah Morgan. “In addition to funding for more meals to meet rising demand, Google’s investments in food system infrastructure and new digital tools will help our network better reach communities facing the greatest challenges.”
Food banks themselves face mounting headwinds as food donations decline and costs rise for food purchases, transportation and every other aspect of operations. These challenges come as Oregon Food Bank expects as many as 1.5 million people will seek emergency food assistance across Oregon and Southwest Washington this year — nearly double the pre-pandemic need.
Google has seen the need reflected in Google Search Trends on a national and local level in the Pacific Northwest. Nationally, Google sees a spike in searches for food support every November, but more than ever before, Americans are making searches around “food” and “prices” in 2022. In Oregon, searches for “food pantries near me” are up 70% in the past 12 months. People are also searching “how to give back” more than ever, with searches for “where to donate food near me” skyrocketing 850% across the country over the past five years.
“Addressing food insecurity requires a sustained and coordinated approach. We’re proud to partner with Feeding America to deliver over 50 million meals to people in need, and to work with them to strengthen their technology infrastructure,” said Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google and Alphabet. “We’re also making our products, like Search and Maps, more helpful to people searching for resources or ways to give back.”
Local community members can support Oregon Food Bank in several ways including through volunteer opportunities across the state, financial donations, and advocacy for policy solutions that address the root causes of hunger.
“This organization and its volunteers are working to change the systems that have created food insecurity to begin with,” said Oregon Senator Lew Frederick. “They’re creating community specific solutions by lifting up communities and voices that have been historically ignored.”
Oregon Food Bank also receives donated Search Ads to help connect people looking for help with resources and share opportunities for community members to take action as volunteers, advocates and donors.
“With food and energy costs rising, this support could also help keep more people from experiencing houselessness,” said Oregon Rep. Tawna Sanchez. “If Oregon’s working families can spend less putting food on the table, they can put more toward rent and energy bills as leaders work toward creating more long-lasting solutions to address the root causes of hunger and poverty .”
*$1 helps provide at least 10 meals secured by Feeding America® on behalf of local member food banks.
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 systemically in our mission to end hunger in Oregon: we foster community connections to help people access nutritious, affordable food today, and we build community power to eliminate the root causes of hunger for good. Visit OregonFoodFinder.org to find resources in your community.
About Feeding America
Feeding America® is the largest hunger-relief organization in the United States. Through a network of more than 200 food banks, 21 statewide food bank associations, and over 60,000 partner agencies, food pantries and meal programs, we helped provide 6.6 billion meals to tens of millions of people in need last year. Feeding America also supports programs that prevent food waste and improve food security among the people we serve; brings attention to the social and systemic barriers that contribute to food insecurity in our nation; and advocates for legislation that protects people from going hungry. Visit www.feedingamerica.org, find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.
Google.org, Google’s philanthropy, brings the best of Google to help solve some of humanity’s biggest challenges combining funding, product donations and technical expertise to support underserved communities and provide opportunity for everyone. We engage nonprofits and social enterprises who make a significant impact on the communities they represent, and whose work has the potential to produce meaningful change. We want a better world, faster — and we believe in leveraging technology and applying scalable data-driven innovation to move the needle.