Zupan’s Markets is proud to have partnered with the Portland Police Bureau Sunshine Division for over 25 years, helping to provide year-round food donations. In addition, 11 years ago the Thanksgiving Food Box Program was established to provide local families with a Thanksgiving meal. This program is funded solely by Zupan’s Markets and would not exist without the donations from Zupan’s customers and associates. Food for the boxes is purchased by Zupan’s Markets and packed on the Monday before Thanksgiving by Zupan’s associates. Boxes are then distributed by the Sunshine Division staff.
For the past 94 years the Sunshine Division has been providing food and clothing assistance to local families and individuals at no-cost. They are the only police-initiated food relief nonprofit partnering closely with first responders. This partnership allows the Sunshine Division to address hunger issues 24/7. In times of crisis anyone in Portland can call the police non-emergency line to receive a Sunshine Division food box at any time, day or night (when all other resources are closed).
Since 2012, the Sunshine Division has increased the amount of clients they’ve served by 35.6%. Despite that increase, they still maintain an unusually high efficiency rating of 91% ($.91) of every dollar goes directly into program services). They have received five consecutive 4-out-of-4 star ratings by charity watchdog Charity Navigator for fiscal transparency and efficiency. No other food relief nonprofit in Oregon has received such a high designation. This rating ranks them among the top 7% of charities nationwide for program efficiency.
The Sunshine Division is more than just a food bank, or a place to “house” food. They also offer several food assistance services to help make food more accessible to those that need support. Their North Thompson food “store” is open 6 days a week allowing clients to access food that fits their family’s dietary and cultural needs. In November of 2017, Sunshine Division opened a second food pantry facility on SE Stark to respond to the growing needs in an area of town with limited access to food assistance. They deliver food boxes to the doors of households during the holidays, and offer a summer food box program to address the absence of free and reduced school meals for kids during the summer months, as well as a food box programs assisting veterans and active military families. In addition, they work side-by-side with Portland Police Bureau officers in a first-responder capacity, bringing food to the families who need emergency assistance at times when they can’t access food on their own.
Thank you to all our customers who participated this year in giving towards our Thanksgiving Box Program. Together we raised over 10K and packed 500 Thanksgiving food boxes on Monday, November 20. Each box was given to a Portland family in need. We will continue to take donations for the Sunshine Division through December 31, which will help to provide food for their programs throughout the next year.