everyone deserves good food
Our Food System
HDFFA is invested in a just and equitable food system where people have access to quality fresh food regardless of their income level. We support a sustainable food system where our food is produced in ways that protect the health of the land, those who work it, and the families and communities who consume its bounty, and where anyone can access this food.
HDFFA recognizes that many food assistance policies were created with inequities due in large part to historical and current systemic injustices. Food insecurity rates continue to be higher among Black, Native American, and Hispanic households, as well as households with children headed by a single woman (Oregon Hunger Task Force).
Improving food Security
We strengthen the ties betwen traditional food security efforts (food bank) and building healthy food systems (farm to plate) We purchase food directly from local farmers for Food Access programs, provide educational materials about how to shop, prep and cook with local and fresh foods, remove transportation barriers, and partner with regional organizations to improve access for residents that have been marginalized due to systems and policies that do not adequately meet their needs.
- Purchased $45,000 worth of food from local farmers for our VeggieRx program.
- Provided 388 food insecure residents with food and education from a Registered Dietician.
- Partnered with 50+ health care and non-profit partners to provide VeggieRx in Bend, Redmond and Prineville.
- Diverted 70,000+ lbs. of excess food from farmers and gardeners to the NeighborImpact Food Bank through Grow & Give, which is the equivalent of 60,000+ meals (1.2lbs food = 1 meal; USDA).
- Paid farmers $14,500 for their donations to Grow & Give thanks to grants from the NW Farm Credit Services, Central Oregon Health Council, Oregon Community Foundation, and the Whole Cities Foundation.
What you can do
Food justice is a view of the food systems that sees healthy food as a basic human right and addresses structural barriers to eliminating disparities and inequities.
Food equity is social justice in food access (“the absence of disparities in food access” – no one should be denied culturally appropriate, nutritious foods)*
Food insecurity is being without access to a sufficient quantity of affordable, nutritious, and culturally appropriate food
*Based on Paula Braveman’s definition of health equity, UCSF
- Nearly 16 million children go to bed hungry, that’s 33% of Black, 25% Latino, and 16% white children who experience food insecurity.
- >30 million people live in places that lack access to healthy food, including over 8% of rural families living 10 miles or more from a grocery store, a concern highest among Native American populations.
- 1 in 6 people work in the food system from the farm to kitchen and far too many take home poverty-level wages. Those mostly likely to earn minimum or sub-minimum wages as low as $2.13/hour are women, Black, or Latinx.
The Reality for Central Oregonians
- Between fifteen to twenty percent (15-20%) of our neighbors experience food insecurity (2020).
- 39,000 people are visiting food pantries for assistance on a monthly basis (2020). Of these, nearly 8,000 do not qualify for federal assistance (SNAP, WIC or other funds) and are reliant on pantries and other community programs for support.
- A tri-county average of 64% of school aged youth rely on free or reduced meals at schools to support their daily diet (2019). With schools closed, families are increasingly reliant on food pantries for support.