Portland Student Community Response
In April 2020, a small group of high school students founded the Portland Student Pandemic Response to help students to find COVID-related opportunities for volunteer work and a sense of community during lockdown. Students distributed food and care packages, made masks, helped people navigate the vaccine signup process. Now named Portland Student Community Response, PSCR is still going strong. The student-led Change Maker is connecting students with volunteer opportunities beyond the pandemic, including shelters, wildfire relief, and social justice.
Virginia Garcia Memorial Foundation
The mission of the Virginia Garcia Memorial Foundation is to "provide enduring support for the Virginia Garcia Memorial Health Center through funding, community relations and through the cultivation of community friendships, partners and donors." Portland Monthly recognized the Foundation for their efforts with mobile vaccination clinics, bringing more than 27,000 COVID-19 vaccines to migrant workers and other throughout the Willamette Valley.
Lines for Life
Lines for Life is a regional non-profit dedicated to preventing substance abuse and suicide. For the past year and a half, Lines for Life has been a lifeline for many Portlanders struggling with the mental toll of the pandemic and its effect on people's lives, jobs and families. We salute their efforts to provide emotional support, mental health resources and substance abuse counseling for Portlanders.
Since 1952, Blanchet House has been offering services to the Portland community and is known to serve more than 1,000 hot meals a day from their Old Town-Chinatown location. We named Blanchet House a Change Maker this year in recognition of their dedication to continuing their essential food service even when COVID halted indoor dining. In quick fashion, service were transformed into take-away meals and volunteers packed sack lunches and care kits from home.
Asian Pacific American Network of Oregon
For 25 years,Asian Pacific American Network of Oregon has been dedicated to building and supporting Portland's Asian and Pacific Islander community. During the pandemic they increased their efforts to support this particularly hard-hit group. Through their anti-racism work, small business aid, rent relief, multilingual resources and vaccine events, they showed up for their community and that's why we named APANO a Change Maker.
Next Up amplifies the voices and leadership of young people to achieve a more just and equitable state. Next Up Action Fund engages the young leaders to build political power and fight for a more equitable Oregon. In 2020, under the leadership of their executive director Elona J. Wilson, Next Up launched a campaign to increase voter turnout and advocate for voter reform. Their grassroots efforts of calling nearly 200,000 young Oregonians helped to significantly increase Oregon's turnout of voters age 18 to 29.
Brown Hope is a racial justice movement dedicated to collective healing, leading community-driven initiatives for action, celebration, and empowerment. A powerful force of change in our community, Brown Hope raised more than $2 million for their Black Resilience Fund to help cover living expenses of Black Portlanders. Other programs, like their weekly Power Hour, have attracted national attention as a model for local-based reparations and policy change initiatives.
Don’t Shoot Portland is a social justice organization that uses art, education and community engagement to create social change. Don't Shoot's efforts in racial justice and human rights manifest in educational resources and archives and the scrutiny of the Portland Police Bureau's actions.This past year, Don't Shoot has grown in numbers and community support, and has been working directly with the community to distribute PPE, art supplies and legal resources. They also organized a gallery show to detail the history of Portland's racial housing inequities and have been instrumental in the preservation of the murals painted downtown during the 2020 protests.
Led by people of color, immigrants and refugees, rural communities, and people experiencing poverty, United Oregon works across Oregon to build a unified intercultural movement for justice. Programs such as economic development in underserved areas of Portland, leadership training for new graduates, and climate change relief, United Oregon is addressing urgent issues facing Oregon's BIPOC community. In addition to their ongoing efforts, we recognized United Oregon as a Change Maker for their pandemic-related fundraising efforts that provided more than $25,000 in direct rent relief last year.
Equitable Giving Circle
Launched just 18 months ago, Equitable Giving Circle focuses on the fact that equity is not uniform and every community has different needs. Their work aims to build immediate and increased equity throughout Portland’s BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) communities through a combination of fund development and network building opportunities that center economic equity. This Change Maker is sourcing produce from 20+ BIPOC-owned farms across Oregon and has provided fresh produce boxes to more than 25,000 families during the pandemic.
Wild Salmon Center
Wild Salmon Center is an international nonprofit, headquartered in Portland and with activities in the Russian Far East, Japan, Alaska, British Columbia, Washington, Oregon, and California. Focused on maintaining strong salmon populations, their work spans 71 rivers and more than 3 million acres. By working to protect and conserve salmon habitats, the organization has an impact on the broader ecosystem. Not just the orcas, bears and seals that rely on salmon as a primary food sources, but the entire river habitat. Wild Salmon Center works with other local conservation based organizations by providing funding, research and policy support to increase their reach and impact.
Rogue Climate's empowers and supports Southern Oregon communities most impacted by climate change, including low-income, rural, youth, seniors, and communities of color. In 2020, Rogue Climate swung into action to help those displaced by Obenchain and Almeda Fires. Their Rogue Valley Relief Fund raised $1 million for families in need and they helped operate the Phoenix Fire Relief Center, distributing food and supplies to up to 800 households. In addition to assisting with immediate needs of the community, the nonprofit is also advocating for policies that will address future needs and long-lasting effects of climate change.
Cascade Volunteers is the nonprofit friends group of the Willamette National Forest that connects individuals and communities to the Willamette National Forest and adjacent public lands through programs, stewardship, and education. They train volunteers and lead stewardship projects in Oregon's beautiful Cascade Mountains. Following the fires of 2020, Cascade Volunteers has been collaborating with other organization on the McKenzie Regenerative Travel Project to restore fire-devastated areas along the McKenzie River corridor. With more than 100 volunteers, they are working on hands-on forest restoration, trail maintenance, tree planting and local community building through travel project trips.
Adopt One Block
AdoptOneBlock is a volunteer-based organization of Block Ambassadors who commit to maintain their adopted square block free of litter over the course of one year. The organization's model is a simple and straightforward method for neighborhood clean up. Once volunteers sign up to clean up the block of their choice, the supplies they need to follow through with their pledge are delivered free of charge. To date their volunteer core is up to 4,800 and with commitments to keep more than 5,600 blocks free of litter and trash.
Thank you to our sponsor, Bank of America, for making this opportunity happen. We are excited to help amplify the reach of a deserving organization.