Over the years, Grand Central Bakery has generously supported neighborhood and school fund raisers, donated leftover bread to food pantries, and directed dollars to a range of worthy nonprofits.
In 2017, we felt it was time for a more targeted approach to our giving. We did two things:
- To support volunteering by our employees, we established Community Time, offering eight paid hours of community service per year to any eligible employee.
- We earmarked $25,000 for Community Grants focused on workplace equality, immigrant rights, and land stewardship. This allows our charitable dollars to impact a few areas we are especially committed to.
After reviewing the work of many worthy organizations, we chose the six groups listed below as our Community Grant winners. Three are in Portland, three in Seattle. In addition to receiving checks for $4,100, each one, as well as more than half a dozen grant finalists*, received additional donations from Grand Central employees as part of our year-end company match.
If you visited our bakery-cafes in 2017 or bought a loaf of Grand Central Bakery bread, if you work for us or if you simply love us from afar, you are a part of this, and we thank you. Here’s to making a difference in 2018 and beyond.
2017 Community Grant Winners
Puget Soundkeeper Alliance – Protecting and preserving the waters of Puget Sound
Serves the 4.3 million residents living within the Puget Sound region by fighting to improve water quality and to ensure everyone has access to swimmable, drinkable, and fishable waters. Our grant will help fund a Stewardship Program that seeks to empower local community members to be stewards of their own watershed.
Advocates for socially and environmentally responsible family-scale agriculture in Oregon. This group fosters connections between eaters and farmers, supports new farmers, and runs Watchdog Program holding state agencies and policymakers accountable. They’re currently working on growing pasture-based farming in Oregon – that is to say, products from livestock that have been raised outdoors, on pasture, in a humane and ecologically sustainable manner (the type of meat and eggs we serve at our cafes!). Our grant will support a Portland event series to promote pasture-based meat and agriculture.
Every year this organization helps nearly 1,000 homeless youth trade street life for independent living. They offer a range of support services for youth in Multnomah County: mental and physical health care, case management, housing, counseling, daily meals, drug and alcohol services, and a safe place off the streets, and education and employment programs. Our grant will allow staff to provide basic items where and when they are needed most – soap, a pair of dry socks, a notebook for a class or a bus ticket to reach a new job.
Education, legislative advocacy. Ensuring and promoting dignity, safety, and equality for all lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer Washingtonians. Grant will support education and outreach around anti-bullying, root causes of hate crimes, and personal advocacy.
Legal services for immigrants in Washington State. Promoting justice by defending and advancing the rights of immigrants through direct legal services, systemic advocacy and community education. Grant will further work in these three areas.
Oregon’s Latino immigrant rights organization. Working to improve the lives of Latino immigrants and their families in Oregon through advocacy, coalition building, leadership development, and civic engagement. Grant will allow Causa to host more Know Your Rights trainings in Oregon and provide more educational materials to Latino immigrants and their families, especially in rural Oregon, where resources for such trainings are scarce.
We invite you to learn more about these organizations and consider supporting them or another worthy nonprofit with your time or contributions.
Happy New Year!