Portland sisters say food aid from Sunshine Division has helped ease some concerns during the pandemic

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PORTLAND, Ore. (KPTV) — This month, you can help local families in need by donating to the FOX 12 Hunger Free Project food drive at any Fred Meyer store. More than two years into the pandemic, many people are still struggling to get back on their feet, and that’s why the Sunshine Division says it’s providing more food than ever.

“It was devastating for our family. It was a big deal,” Megan said. “My husband is our bread chef, so having him away from work was a huge hit.”

At the start of the pandemic, when much of the world shut down, so did Megan’s husband’s workplace. This left them with almost no more money.

“You’ve burned everything you’ve saved, and you keep calling, ‘Are we going back? Is there a recall from work?’

Megan and her family turned to the Sunshine Division for help. A story shared by thousands of people in the Portland metro area, including his own sister.

“I had just gotten a new job, but I couldn’t get started,” Cassidy said.

Cassidy was about to start a new job when the pandemic hit. She said that was when she joined her sister in need of food aid to help put food on the table for her two teenagers.

“We would go together to save gas. We were like, ‘Hey, sister, do you want to go get some boxes of food with me,’ and I was like, ‘Yeah, I went out too,'” Cassidy said. “So we would ride together and go get boxes. »

Kyle Camberg of Sunshine Division said since the start of the pandemic they have distributed over 300,000 boxes of food, which equates to over 7 million meals.

“A little over a year ago it was the best we’ve ever seen. Nearly 10 times as many households as we have ever served came to see us every week,” he said.

Although needs have decreased since last year, Camberg said they are still serving four times as many families as in 2019. He said the impact of something as devastating as the pandemic can have a ripple effect that lasts for years.

For sisters Megan and Cassidy, they said being able to rely on the Sunshine Division for food helped ease some of their worries during a difficult time.

“Things got really low. They made it easy to get help and not feel funny about it because no one wants to ask for that kind of help. It’s not an easy thing, especially if you’re used to taking care of yourself and things change like that. So yeah, we were lucky,” Megan said.

The Sunshine Division has been providing emergency food to local people in need for nearly 100 years.

You can help by donating to the FOX 12 Hunger Free Project food drive at any Fred Meyer by April 22. For more information, click here.

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