Burrito Brigade is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization with a mission to feed the hungry in Oregon through three main projects: The Weekend Burrito Brigade, the Little Free Pantries, and Waste to Taste.
There is enough food in Oregon to feed every hungry person, but there are barriers to access. Burrito Brigade is committed to engaging our community in the fight to end hunger through a network of volunteers and partnerships with local organizations. We work with, accept donations from, and provide food for the public — regardless of housing status, ability, race, gender identity, sexual orientation, social status, addiction, criminal background, religious affiliation, or age.
Food is a human right.
FEEDING THE HUNGRY
The Weekend Burrito Brigade (WBB) started in 2014, and has hand-delivered thousands* of nutritious vegan meals to hungry folks across Eugene and Springfield. The Weekend Burrito Brigade targets two of the most food-insecure days: Saturdays and Sundays. Our unique distribution model ensures hot meals make it directly into the hands of hungry folks by way of foot or bike delivery, as well as by drivers.
Production and distribution is nearly 100% volunteer powered! The WBB operates with very low overhead, buying foods like tortillas and dry beans at cost, when possible, as well as through donations from community partners, like grocery stores. We also operate with the help of some grant funding, and thanks to the generosity of recurring donations from community members.
We have expanded our operations since 2014, setting up the Little Free Pantries in 2019 (with 55 of them now in operation!), and opened up Waste to Taste at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.
Waste to Taste (W2T) operates Monday – Friday, by appointment only. We work with local restaurants, grocery stores, and farms to rescue food that would otherwise end up in landfills, and get it to people in need. Our free pantry is setup like a grocery store, where our shoppers navigate food by aisles, selecting items that their household will be able to use and enjoy.
This model helps reduce waste further, compared to models where households receive pre-made food boxes. Because of food sensitivities and allergies, medical and dietary needs, and religious and cultural customs, a one-box-fits-all method does not, in fact, fit all. Allowing our shoppers to do their own shopping benefits them, as well as the food system, by preventing wasted food. Waste to Taste provides an independent and dignified experience with no proof of need required to shop.
Waste to Taste is also almost exclusively powered by amazing volunteers, some grant funding, and generous donors.
The Little Free Pantries (LFPs) work to address food insecurity at a hyper-local level. The motto is: “Take what you need. Give what you can.” It is all about neighbors helping neighbors. If you are interested in supporting a pantry in your neighborhood, click here for more information. If you are looking for food close to home, you can search for your nearest Little Free Pantry here, either using the list or the interactive map.
LFPs are managed by Pantry Hosts, Star Supporters, and General Supporters (see: regular ol’ community members!). Resources from Waste to Taste help supplement some of our high-volume, high-traffic pantries throughout the community. Our Star Supporters and Pantry Hosts come at least once a week pickup food from Waste to Taste to distribute to one or more of our busiest pantries across Eugene and Springfield. LFP efforts are possible thanks to our dedicated volunteers, community members who are active in their neighborhoods, some grant funding, as well as private donors.
*More than 300,000 nutritious, vegan meals and counting, as of Spring 2023!
HOW YOU CAN HELP
There are many ways to get involved! You can fill out a volunteer interest form to join one of our many projects. As you read above, volunteers do a lot of the proverbial and literal heavy lifting for all of our projects!
You can also make financial donations, as well as in-kind donations, such as food and supplies. As a small nonprofit, we rely on donations, grant funding, as well as ongoing support from monthly supporters. Please consider becoming a monthly donor. Even an ongoing donation of $5 makes a big difference!
Burrito Brigade’s projects are truly only possible thanks to support from generous and compassionate community members like you!