The Woodland Action Center (WAC) Board of Directors and Staff would like to thank you for all your contributions and support this past year, and what a year it has been!
Our Thrift Store has really increased sales revenue under the management of Tanya Rocha. During Tanya’s second year we have seen steady increases each month she has been running the store. Phenomenally the proceeds from the Thrift Store are now responsible for
providing over two-thirds of our operating income.
WAC received $8,000 from the Emergency Food and Shelter Program (EFSP) that is a part of the United Way program to help purchase Emergency Supplies for our unsheltered clients. These funds provided the resources of tents, tarps, sleeping bags, ready to eat food, and
other emergency supplies to over 100 clients during this last year.
Two programs that started in the Spring of 2018 are still going strong. Laundry Love – Woodland, Washington and our association with AmpleHarvest.org. The goal of Laundry Love is to help struggling families in the area who lack enough laundry resources by providing one evening a month for four hours access to machines at The Cedars Laundromat. WAC funds two loads per family in the oversized washers, the equivalent of 6 regular loads and a value of $35 per client.
AmpleHarvest.org is a unique nationwide resource that is eliminating the waste of food. It is accomplished by utilizing the Internet to enable local gardeners to easily find local food banks and donate their excess harvest. Our clients really appreciate and enjoy the local
and fresh fruits and vegetables.
Our second annual Drive Out Hunger Charity Golf Tournament, which is our largest fund raiser of the year, was held May 3rd at Lewis River Golf Course and was well attended. Monies paid for green fees and silent auction raffle raised $15,000! The date for 2020 is not set in stone, but we are aiming for either May 8th or May 15th so keep your eyes open for updates and join the fun.
During the summer break (week of July 4th), we were hard at work on updates and a remodel of the food bank distribution area. First is to
recognize that the project was made possible through donations from Community Foundation for SW Washington, Network Support Funds (Oregon Food Bank), The Franz Foundation, and the money raised by the golf tournament. Secondly, and as important, is that 95% of the labor was provided by board members and volunteers.
The building WAC occupies is, well, old and the florescent light fixtures throughout the facility were a big energy drain. A donation from Walt’s Wholesale Meats along with a rebate from Cowlitz PUD made it possible for us to hire Haskin Electric to replace those fixtures
with energy efficient LED lights. The payback period for this upgrade is expected to be around 12 - 15 months and then on to solid savings.
To further improve our ability to provide our primary service we “deconstructed” the existing shelving, painted the walls, purchased new rolling shelving, produce tables, bakery racks, and updated the signage to make shopping easier and more expedient for clients. We have quite the new look and layout! Check out the changes on our Facebook page.
The new Woodland Grocery Outlet opened its doors in August 2018, and to celebrate their first year they held a month-long food drive which net 2,300 lbs. of food. Cash donations were also taken from generous customers which provided WAC $795.00 in gift cards at
the store. These funds are used to purchase items to fill gaps in our food offerings.
Partnering again this year with Woodland Safeway allowed us to benefit from Safeway’s Turkey Bucks Program here in our community. Woodland Action received that support directly through meals for over 300 hundred families helping them celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday. The meals included: turkey, gravy, stuffing, mashed potatoes, and rolls. All of this assembled and distributed by volunteers from Safeway and our food bank crew.
Woodland Schools had two food drives this past fall. Woodland High School’s Me to We Club had the “We Scare Hunger” drive on October 30th that raised 360 pounds of food. This was followed up with a drive for the month of November that raised a total of 4,095
pounds of food! That was delivered right before Thanksgiving and aided in meeting the holiday needs.
Rounding out the fundraising events for the year is Empty Bowls a soup feed and silent auction, held early December at Woodland High School, raised $3,952 for 2019. All of this made possible with the help of: Clark College Students, Woodland High School Staff, Sodexo, Skills USA Students, Luckman’s Coffee, McMenamins Kalama Harbor Lodge, Kalama Sourdough Bread Company, Red Leaf Coffee, and a new event sponsor TigerStop.
For the second year WAC participated in the KPTV Channel 12’s Toy Drive, and with the help of The Promise Church, toys were given out to over 530 local area children.
With all of the positive changes and advances this past year WAC hit a snag and found it necessary to restructure the distribution days. Unfortunately, it became necessary to reduce the number of food distribution days from Tuesdays and Saturdays to just Saturday. This
was due to the shortage of volunteers on Tuesdays; our board members all have other full-time employment commitments, so they are unable to help during the week. In order to reduce the impact of going down to one distribution day per week, we expanded the hours
WAC is open on Saturdays from four hours to eight (9am – 5pm instead of Noon – 4pm), so WAC is still able to have eight full hours of weekly food distribution to our clients.
Even with this new schedule, WAC is still meeting its mission by serving nearly 900 households per month consisting of over 2,100 individuals. The age groups we serve break into these age categories: 0-2, 3-17, 18-64, 65+
Because there are clients that can only make it in on weekdays, we have not ruled out reopening on a weekday once we have adequate help, but for the foreseeable future we will stay with being open only on Saturdays.
We could not have had such a successful 2019 without your support and are looking forward to a great start for the new decade in 2020.