Newport Avenue Market and Oliver Lemon’s Employee Owners and Shoppers Raise $66,710 to Fight Hunger
The demand for food continues to rise, and local organizations are relying on donations now more than ever. Four Central Oregon organizations that provide meals and food boxes received a boost this week thanks to Newport Avenue Market and Oliver Lemon’s customers and colleagues’ generosity.
Each December, Newport Avenue Market and Oliver Lemon’s shoppers donate money to the Food for February fundraiser, and the 100% employee-owned markets match these funds. This year the combined efforts raised $66,710. As a result of the fundraiser, the funds raised will be used to purchase groceries at wholesale cost for Family Kitchen of Bend, Sisters Kiwanis Foodbank, Sisters Family Kitchen and Meals on Wheels of Central Oregon.
Newport Avenue Market and Oliver Lemon’s teams work closely with their wholesalers to purchase thousands of pounds of food, including fresh produce and meat, from the shopping lists of Family Kitchen of Bend, Sisters Kiwanis Foodbank, Sisters Family Kitchen and Meals on Wheels of Central Oregon managed by the Redmond Senior Center.
“After back-to-back years of community struggle, our customer generosity shines bright!” said Lauren G.D. Redman, CEO of Rudy’s Markets Inc. “Because of our customer’s kindness in December by giving to Food for February at the check stands, we’ve been able to reach our matching goal of $30,000 towards addressing hunger in Central Oregon.”
It is not commonly known that February is one of the hardest-hitting months for hungry families in Central Oregon. Money is tight after the holidays, donations dwindle, and food pantries are depleted. Since 2011, Food for February has raised over $411,500 for hungry families in Central Oregon, including $189,000 in matching funds from Newport Avenue Market and Oliver Lemon’s.
“We’re reaching even more of our neighbors who are experiencing houselessness, are living life on the edge financially, or who need a regular place to be to feel some order in their life.” said Donna Burklo, Program Director, Family Kitchen. “In COVID, our to-go meals (now over 7,500 a month!) are being delivered at a rate of 1,100 weekly to diners who can’t get to our meal site for one reason or another. Our partnership with Newport Avenue Market and their shoppers allows each and every diner, whether on site or on a delivery route, to feel as though someone cares enough to make good food available to all.”
“Community partnerships are so essential to us,” said Teresa Hogue, Redmond Senior Center. “We are grateful to be included in the support offered by Oliver Lemon’s Market as we endeavor to provide nutritious, hot meals for those in need.”
About Rudy’s Market Inc.
Since opening its flagship grocery store in 1976, Rudy’s Markets have been the No. 1 choice of foodies in Central Oregon. Today, Rudy’s Markets Inc. operates three locally founded, 100% employee-owned specialty grocery stores in Central Oregon: Newport Avenue Market in Bend, and Oliver Lemon’s in Sisters and Terrebonne. Rudy’s Markets offers shoppers both mainstream and hard-to-find food items as well as kitchenware and unusual gifts. Its stores support local producers, and offer an expansive selection of high-quality, in-demand food and beverage items, including over 600 varieties of craft beer. For more details, go to www.newportavemarket.com or www.oliverlemons.com.
About Family Kitchen
Guided by the belief that nobody should be hungry, Family Kitchen has been providing meals to anyone in need since 1986. Family Kitchen serves three dinners and five lunches each week in Bend and one dinner weekly in Sisters, averaging 7,500 meals per month served by over 350 volunteers. Our diners are treated with respect and are asked nothing but to leave with a full stomach. Family Kitchen operates as a separate entity sponsored by Trinity Episcopal Church (EIN 93-0427371). For more information, please visit www.familykitchen.org.
About Sisters Kiwanis Food Bank
In its three-decade history, Sisters Kiwanis has been involved in the development and support of many community organizations, including Scouts, Campfire, Little League, organized soccer, Habitat for Humanity, and Sisters Organization for Activities and Recreation to name just a few. In addition, Kiwanis volunteers maintain and staff the community food bank, which provides emergency food boxes for less fortunate citizens in the area. Food Bank Open Thursdays, 9am-2pm 328 W. Main Street, Sisters, OR 97759. For more information, please visit www.sisterskiwanis.org/food-bank/
About Redmond Oregon Senior Center
Meals on Wheels of Central Oregon is a community-based program of the Redmond Senior Center. It provides adults, 60 years or older, either home-bound or having difficulty shopping/cooking, a nutritious meal, a friendly visit, and a quick safety check. According to the last census, over 23% of the Redmond, Terrebonne and Crooked River Ranch population is 50 or older. By 2025, the number of seniors is expected to double. With rising food costs and the lack of public transit, many older citizens are finding it harder to access nutritious meals. Redmond Senior Center’s vision is that no senior will go hungry or become overwhelmed with social isolation. Staff and volunteers are working to help our senior neighbors survive and thrive during these challenging times by providing fresh and healthy meals along with a warm friendly smile. For more information, please visit www.redmondseniors.org.