Making an Impact Across Central Oregon   -   June 2017

Shelter, Food, Education, Homeownership

As one of Central Oregon's largest nonprofit organizations, NeighborImpact serves 55,000 people annually in Crook, Deschutes and Jefferson counties and the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs. The services offered by our organization are designed to assist people in building a future for themselves and their families while strengthening the communities around us.

Brown Bags, Meal Sites, and Food Pantries

Volunteers Needed: Short Term and Long Term

Head Start: Ready for Kindergarten

2017 Homebuyer Education Workshops

The Oregon Hunger Response Fund

Making and Impact: Providing Peace of Mind

Board Spotlight: Susan Bray

Community Action: Fighting Poverty Locally

Welcome Judy Starr

Brown Bags, Meal Sites, and Food Pantries


With your help, NeighborImpact's Food Assistance Program feeds more than 20,000 people each month. We partner with grocery stores, such as Market of Choice and Safeway, to recover and distribute fruit, vegetables, dairy, and meat in order to share with those who might not be able to afford such items.

We also partner with 42 programs across Central Oregon, including nonprofit organizations, shelters, and churches, to distribute fresh and shelf-stable food to those that need it.  Last year, NeighborImpact distributed 3.7 million pounds of food to partners, providing over 3.08 million meals to neighbors.  NeighborImpact serves as the backbone of our network and provides the infrastructure and resources to recover and distribute food on such a large scale.  Food and cash donations are necessary on an ongoing basis in order for the program to run.Program feeds more than 20,000 people each month. We partner with grocery stores, such as Market of Choice and Safeway, to recover and distribute fruit, vegetables, dairy, and meat in order to share with those who might not be able to afford such items.

"Keeping our Food Bank shelves stocked is important not only to NeighborImpact, but to all of the organizations and programs we serve. Without NeighborImpact, many of the local nonprofits and groups providing meals and food boxes would need to purchase trucks to transport food, host food drives on a regular basis, and compete for funding," says Ms. Sanders. "We have an incredible network with amazing partners and we at the Food Bank are proud to be a part of it and provide such a necessary piece of the system."

NeighborImpact's Food Distribution Partners 2016 include:

Crook County
Prineville First Baptist Church
Prineville Brown Bag @ St VDP
Soroptomist Senior Center
St. Vincent De Paul – Prineville
Mountain Star Family Relief Nursery Prineville

Jefferson County

Best Club
Warm Springs Presbyterian Church
United Methodist BackPack Buddies
United Methodist Church Food Bank
United Methodist Madras Brown Bag
Mountain Star Family Relief Nursery Madras
Seventh Day Adventists Community Center - Madras

Deschutes County
Bend's Community Center
Bethlehem Inn
Bread of Life -Westside Church (Sisters Brown Bag)
Cascade Peer & Self Help Center
Crooked River Brown Bag
Faith Harvest Helpers
Family Kitchen (Trinity Episcopal)
Holy Trinity Care & Share
Jericho Weekend Food
La Pine Community Pantry
La Pine Community Kitchen
Mountain Star Family Relief Nursery Bend
Nativity Lutheran Church
Newport Ave Brown Bag
Redmond Community Church
Salvation Army
Seventh Day Adventist Community Center - Redmond
Sisters Kiwanis
Smith Rock Community Church
St. Vincent De Paul - Bend
St. Vincent De Paul - La Pine
St. Vincent De Paul - Redmond
Teen Challenge
Terrebonne Brown Bag
The Giving Plate
The Loft - Cascades Youth & Family
The Shepherd's House
Water Church
Little Deschutes Grange Brown Bag
Redmond Assembly of God

Click for more information on the Food Program.  For information on how you can help by donating to our organization or hosting a food drive, click here.

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Volunteers Needed: Short Term and Long Term


In 2016, NeighborImpact Volunteers contributed 22,549 hours of service in Crook, Deschutes, and Jefferson Counties and we could not possibly serve more than 55,000 individuals a year without the help of these dedicated people. During the 2017-2018 fiscal year, we are looking for volunteers to assist with one-day and ongoing projects.  Read more to find out if there is a volunteer opportunity that’s right for you.

Interested in meeting more neighbors?  Join our HomeSource Team this summer as they conduct a door-to-door survey for our Community Impact Management project.  Snacks, T-shirts and fun provided. Visit our website or click here for more information.

Have a green thumb?  NeighborImpact is looking for volunteers to work in our community garden in Redmond.  Visit our website or contact our Food Bank Specialist, Laurie Purcell, for more information.

Have your own garden and too much product?  You can donate your excess, fresh produce to the NeighborImpact Food Bank in Redmond.  Click here to be connected to our Food Bank Specialist, Laurie Purcell.

Love working with children?  Our Head Start program will be looking for volunteers for the 2017-2018 school year.  Volunteers can help design their role in the classroom based on their interest, whether it be small groups, working one-on-one with a high needs student, doing art projects, reading aloud, or simply serving as a classroom helper.  Visit our website at

Interested in encouraging children to read?  Our Child Care Resources program is looking for drivers to deliver Story Time Kits each month to early childhood programs across the region.   Story Time Kits have books, puppets, and music CDs-perfect for encouraging young readers.  Drivers play a critical role in delivering the kits to children and child care staff that, otherwise, would not be able to access such resources. Additionally, sharing the kits amongst many child care centers reduces costs and duplication of services. Contact Karen Prow at 541-323-6557 for more information or for an application.

Interested in helping combat food insecurity in Central Oregon? Our Food Bank is always looking for volunteers to help sort and repack food collected from food drives. Individuals, families, and groups are welcome.  Contact Laurie Purcell for more information.

Have only an hour or a maybe day to spare?  NeighborImpact could always use volunteers for our Empty Bowls event.  This event, which raises about $40,000 annually for our organization, is held each November at Central Oregon Community College. Volunteers are needed for event set up and take down, as well as during the event serving bread, cleaning up between seatings, etc.  For more information, please contact our development department at 541-323-6549.

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Head Start: Ready for Kindergarten


During the last week two weeks of May, Head Start sites across Crook and Deschutes counties were a-buzz with excitement!  Parents, grandparents, friends and neighbors joined their youngest scholars to celebrate the end of the school year.  While some students were excited just for summer to begin, others were overjoyed to be “graduating” from preschool and looking forward to starting Kindergarten in the fall.

“This is a very exciting day for those children who are transitioning, many of which have been with our program for two years,” says Kim Snow, Associate Director of Education and Quality at NeighborImpact.  “Teachers and families came together to celebrate their growth and accomplishments while they were with us.  We are sending children to their local school districts ready for school and fully prepared for that next step in their educational journey.”

NeighborImpact Head Start serves approximately 451 students each year, providing free, high-quality preschool program to children in Central Oregon.  The main goal of the NeighborImpact Head Start program is to increase school readiness and provide children and families with the skills and resources they need be successful.  This year, NeighborImpact Head Start transitioned 239 children from Head Start to local kindergarten classrooms.

But saying goodbye to some students means there is room for new students at all of our Head Start locations this fall.  If your child could benefit from Head Start, please visit our website for more information or call 323-656-6527.

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2017 Homebuyer Education Workshops


NeighborImpact’s Homebuyer Education workshop can provide you with the information and skills you need to prepare for homeownership. Our workshops will help you:

  • Decide if buying a home is right for you
  • Prepare your own spending plan
  • Discover ways to improve your credit
  • Save time and money by learning how to find and work with the right professionals
  • Learn how to care for a home
  • Understand the loans and down payment assistance options you may qualify for

The workshop is based on the “Realizing the American Dream” curriculum, certified by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

Cost: $45 per household
Time: 9:00am to 5:00pm on select Saturdays

July 8, 2017
645 SE Marshall Street

August 12, 2017
20310 Empire Avenue, Suite A100

September 9, 2017
2303 SW First Street

October 14, 2017
20310 Empire Avenue, Suite A100

November 11, 2017
2303 SW First Street

December 9, 2017
16405 1st Street (Park & Recreation Department)
La Pine

For more information about HomeSource and the Personal Finance Workshops click here.

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The Oregon Hunger Response Fund


NeighborImpact’s Food Bank Manager, Carly Sanders, far right, along with Kelly Fraser and Lynn Knox of the Oregon Food Bank, spent time in Salem last month educating local representatives and senators on the importance of the Oregon Hunger Response Fund. The fund is proposed to be cut in the current budget, yet it plays a key role in the collection and distribution of local food. The Oregon Hunger Response Fund is a major component to our mission of fighting hunger in Central Oregon.

Gene Whisnant, shown here, is a long-time supporter of NeighborImpact and serves in the Oregon House of Representatives representing District 53, which encompasses most of Deschutes County.

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Making and Impact: Providing Peace of Mind


Curtis came to NeighborImpact’s Energy Education workshop to learn how to reduce his utility bills, but what he received was a whole lot more.  First, Curtis qualified for an Energy Assistance supplement to help offset the costs of his electricity bill and went home with a bag full of energy-saving devices that he quickly installed at home.  Next, Curtis found out about NeighborImpact’s Mortgage Payment Assistance program and called the next day to learn more. He discovered that he qualified for the program and could receive financial assistance towards his mortgage every month for up to one year.  He worked hard over the next few months submitting his application and paperwork and attending mandatory workshops.  

When the final documents were processed and the assistance came through, Curtis breathed a sigh of relief. “It was like a huge weight was lifted for my family.  Before the assistance came through, I was working two jobs to stay afloat, and we were juggling so many things that I could hardly breathe.”  

Now that Curtis is less worried and has more peace of mind, he is concentrating on securing a job that pays more, is able to spend more time with his children, and has a great deal more optimism. He offers advice for others, “It’s tedious, but it’s worth it. The Mortgage Payment Assistance program has a lot of rules, which can scare people off, but I encourage others to use the resources that NeighborImpact provides to get beyond obstacles and ask for help if you have trouble.”

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Board Spotlight: Susan Bray


“Children are our future.  We need to support their growth in any way we can.” – Susan Bray

Over the past nine years, Susan Bray has dedicated a lot of her free time to NeighborImpact. She served on the Child Care Advisory Board since 2008 and sat on the Head Start Early Childhood Committee as well as NeighborImpact’s Board of Directors.  Susan brought with her a lifetime of experience in and dedication to early childhood development and our organization is better off because of it.  

“I was an early childhood educator in my professional life, so, once I retired, it was natural that I became involved with Child Care Resources and Head Start,” says Susan.  “Since both programs are connected to NeighborImpact, I also became involved with the larger organization.”  

However, Susan was involved with Head Start well before joining NeighborImpact.  As part of Wave I Early Head Start program in Southern Oregon, Susan saw how much the program served not only the children in the preschool program but also the families of those children.  “I have seen many parents learn and grow because of Head Start,” Susan recalls.  “They took part in classes, workshops and trainings through Head Start, and it really benefitted their children and their families.  With all the emphasis on having children ready to begin school, Head Start is giving children who are less advantaged the skills they need to be successful once they do enter the public school system.”

Susan says that in addition to her involvement with our Head Start and Child Care Resources programs, serving on NeighborImpact’s Board has been a pleasure due to seeing first-hand all the good our programs do in Central Oregon.  “It is one thing to know there is a program in the community to help people who need a little hand up, but another to actually learn about and see just how those programs work.  The people who work for NeighborImpact all feel the value of what they do.  They know they are helping their neighbors, and that is a good feeling.”

As the 2016-2017 school year draws to a close, Susan has decided to step down from the Early Childhood Committee and the Board of Directors at NeighborImpact, but her efforts will be felt for decades to come.  Thank you, Susan, for your service to the children and families of Central Oregon and your leadership of our organization.

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Community Action: Fighting Poverty LocallyCAP-logo.png

For more than 32 years, NeighborImpact has been a Community Action Agency and part of the National Community Action Partnership, America’s poverty fighting network.

Community Action comes out of President Lyndon B. Johnson's War on Poverty and continues to be influence by the advocacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  In 1964, the Economic Opportunity Act created the network of locally-focused agencies serving low-income populations.  These Community Action agencies address the root causes and conditions of poverty in the United States, as demonstrated by the diversity of programs provided by Community Action Agencies. Nationwide, these agencies tailor their approaches and services to meet the specific needs of the communities they serve, and put a human face on poverty while advocating for those who do not have a voice and providing opportunities for self-sufficiency.  Locally, NeighborImpact, for instance, offers services such as Head Start and Child Care Resources to give families and children a healthy start.  We offer Weatherization and Energy Assistance to help keep people in their homes and Emergency Food Assistance to help put healthy food on the table for those experiencing hunger or facing food insecurity. 

To learn more about Community Action, visit

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Welcome Judy StarrJudy_Starr_sz.jpg

We are thrilled to welcome Judy Starr as our new Development Director at Neighborimpact.  Judy has nearly 25 years experience working with nonprofit organizations and has raised millions of dollars through major gifts, foundation grant writing, and corporate relations.  Over her career, Judy has held positions such as the Associate Vice President of Operations and Corporate Relations at the Clark College Foundation and the Director of Institutional Advancement at Oregon College of Oriental Medicine, to name just a couple.

Judy’s background in public relations and event planning and management has allowed her to combine these skills to bring community goodwill and positive visibility to the nonprofit organizations she represents as well as those who support them.  

“We are excited to have Judy join our organization and our Management Team,” says Scott Cooper, Executive Director for NeighborImpact.  “We have made great strides in reaching our fundraising goals in the past few years and I am confident that Judy will raise the bar even higher.”

In addition to work experience, Judy has served as a board member for Willamette Valley Development Officers, Public Relations Society of Oregon and is currently serving on the board of directors for the American College of Health Care Science.

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