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That time a bunch of ROCKSTARS walked through our doors…

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Bend is full of rockstars.

They don’t shred a mean guitar or wear tight leather pants. Heck, they don’t even have an entourage to sort through their M&Ms and pick out the green ones.

Instead, they are rockstars of generosity.

When we asked, “Hey, can you help us feed hungry people?”, Bendites donated without hesitation. Throughout the month of December, they helped us raise $50,000 for Food for February—our annual, in-store fundraiser dedicated to serving the hungry in Central Oregon.

Family Kitchen is a local charity committed to providing nutritious meals for anyone in need. Our Food for February fundraiser raises money in December so families can eat nutritious meals throughout the upcoming year. Customers and employees donated $25,000 during the month, which we matched dollar-for-dollar. The $50,000 grand total will stock Family Kitchen’s shelves for the entire year.

In a few weeks Family Kitchen will give us their grocery wish list. We’ll then work hand-in-hand with vendors (Unified Grocers, Eberhard’s Dairy, Boar’s Head and more) to purchase fresh and perishable items at cost. This means quality ingredients for every meal Family Kitchen serves. Delicious, wholesome food is a right, not a privilege.

newport ave market food for february giving plate

What does $50K actually buy? How about:

  • 2340 gallons of milk
  • 18,720 eggs
  • 1560 lbs. of Boar’s Head lunch meats
  • 780 lbs. of cheese
  • 1770 lbs. of bananas
  • 7800 lbs. of Oregon Country Beef
  • 780 lbs. of tomatoes
  • 200 lbs. of hotdogs
  • And on, and on, and on…

The thing about hunger is that it truly knows no season. Our neighbors need our help more than ever. No one should ever go hungry and as a community we can come together in this. Please continue donating your time, resources and good vibes to Family Kitchen and other local charities combating hunger in Central Oregon:

Hunger Prevention Coalition

The Hunger Prevention Coalition ensures funding for local non-profit agencies providing food to individuals and families in need. We partner with them year-round, raising funds through various endeavors. The next time you shop at Newport Avenue Market, consider making a donation at the register to the Help Fill Empty Plates program.

The Giving Plate

Since 2010, The Giving Plate has provided nearly 3 million pounds of food to struggling families. Over 1600 individuals (almost half of them children) walk through their doors each month. The Giving Plate is always in need of donations (of both food and money) to keep their pantry stocked, as well as volunteers to help fill food boxes, greet guests and stock shelves. Check out their list of most-needed food items here.

Bend’s Community Center

Every Sunday Bend’s Community Center provides free breakfast, lunch and dinner to hungry Central Oregon individuals and families. They also provide meals to residents of Shepherd’s House, other local food kitchens and surrounding homeless camps. Click here to see how you can help.

The Bend Food Project

Looking for a simple way to donate? The Bend Food Project has developed a revolutionary method to collect items for Bend food pantries. Fill out a form on their website and a Neighborhood Coordinator will drop off a reusable Bend Food Project bag. Spend the next few weeks filling it up with non-perishable food items. Every other month they’ll pick up your bag and leave an empty one behind.

Thank you, Bendites, for your unflinching generosity. Thank you for rallying around those who need help the most. Together we can continue making a difference in our community.

Rock on, beautiful people. Rock on.

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