Who We Are
The Ashland Food Project was started in January 2009 by a small group of Ashland residents who wanted make it easy for people to donate food to the Ashland Emergency Food Bank. They realized that many of their neighbors wanted to help fight hunger in their community, but for one reason or another, never get around to it. So they created a simple, door-to-door food collection system to enable people to pitch in.
They had three goals:
- To provide a regular supply of food to hungry neighbors
- To create new neighborhood connections and strengthen the community
- To serve as a model for other communities
Armed with brochures that proclaimed, “You want to help, We want to make it easy!,” AFP volunteers canvassed their neighborhoods, knocking on doors and inviting neighbors to participate. Whenever people said “Yes,” the volunteers suggested that they buy just one extra nonperishable food item each week, and store it at home. The volunteers promised to stop by the donors' homes every two months, pick the food up, and take it directly to the food bank.
The project started with a core group of 10 volunteers picking up food. The first Pickup Day, in 2009, netted about 600 pounds of food. By August, 2010, it was a huge success -- 130 Ashland Food Project volunteers were picking up more than 19,000 lbs county-wide, every two months. That's when three Medford families decided the Food Project belonged in Medford, too. They recruited supporters, and after about 6 months of planning were ready to start the Medford Food Project (MFP). They held a meeting in January 2011, and dozens of people showed up to become the MFP’s first Neighborhood Coordinators (NCs). As the month rolled on, more people joined.
The MFP’s first collection was Feb. 15, 2011. About 75 volunteers picked up green bags from nearly 800 families in Jacksonville, Central Point, and Medford.…and delivered an amazing 8,200 lbs. of food!
Today, there are over 100 NCs picking up food from about 1,400 families. After only 4 pickups in 2011, they have already delivered over 50,000 lbs. of food to 19 local food pantries… and they're just getting started!
Join us! Don’t wait for a neighbor to knock on your door. Get in touch and let us know you want to share food. We’ll bring you a green bag, and get you started right away!
Next Pickup Day: Saturday, Feb. 11
Most Needed Items:
- Hearty Soups
- Canned Meat
- Canned Fruit
- Cooking Oil
- Canned Tuna
- Canned Beans
- Dried Beans
- Pinto Beans
- Canned Corn
- Brown Rice
- Long Grain White Rice
- Plain Stewed Tomatoes
- Fruit Cocktail
- Side Dishes
- Soy Milk
- Canned Milk
- Texturized Vegetable Protein
- Side Dishes (Hamburger Helper, Rice-a-Roni, etc.)
The Medford Food Project has very low overhead. We are a volunteer-run organization, but we need funds for purchasing green bags, "thank you" and "sorry" cards, and information for signing up new donors.
Please help us with a tax-deductible donation. You'll receive a receipt for your taxes. Thank you!