Four organizations to receive over $400,000 in grants for community support

NW Natural announces selection of local nonprofits for its philanthropic focus

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November 10, 2022

PORTLAND, Ore. —  NW Natural has selected four local organizations to receive $35,000 per year for three years. These multi-year grants, totaling $420,000 and which include in-kind resources and volunteer support from NW Natural employees, represent the company’s highest level of philanthropic support as part of its Programs of Focus.

Recipients are chosen through a competitive review process that includes a diverse group of employees from across the company, which has been headquartered in Portland since 1859.

“As members of the communities we serve, our employees are best suited to direct our philanthropic giving and help respond to unique community needs,” said Mary Moerlins, Director of Environmental Policy and Corporate Responsibility at NW Natural.

The 2023-2025 Programs of Focus include the following nonprofits:

Adelante Mujeres provides holistic education and empowerment opportunities to marginalized Latina women and families to ensure full participation and active leadership in the community. They envision a community where all families thrive.

"We are thrilled to see this investment in our work to educate and empower the next generation of Latina leaders in Oregon,” said Bridget Cooke, Executive Director at Adelante Mujeres. “Adelante Mujeres means ‘Women Rise Up’ and we are a grassroots organization run by and for the Latine community. We partner with more than 13,000 people per year, building Latina leadership through creative, innovative programming in education, entrepreneurship, health and leadership training. Graduates of our programs become civic leaders, immigrant rights activists, youth leaders, entrepreneurs, community health workers, sustainable farmers, and more."

Asian Health & Service Center is working to be the bridge between Asian and American cultures and build a harmonious community. Their vision is to reduce health inequity and improve health care quality for all Asians. 

“There is a Chinese Idiom 雪中送炭 — offering charcoal to someone in snowy weather,” said Holden Leung, Chief Executive Officer, Asian Health & Service Center. “Funding from NW Natural enables AHSC to realize the spirit of this idiom by providing timely and necessary assistance to Asian immigrant students and their parents in Portland Public Schools. Our program will address stresses relating to miscommunication, discrimination and bullying in school settings by offering language specific counselling and referral services to students and families.”

Growing Gardens uses the experience of growing food in schools, backyards and correctional facilities to cultivate healthy, equitable communities. Their vision is for everyone to have equal access to healthy food and to be stewardesses of our own communities through sharing of resources, educating each other, and learning new skills.

"We believe that it is a basic human right for all people to have access to healthy and nourishing food,” said Rashae Burns, Home Gardens Director at Growing Gardens. “At Growing Gardens, we are committed to building gardens with the community to increase food access for all."

Store to Door supports independent living for Portland area homebound seniors and adults living with disabilities by providing social and community connection, food access, and food security through a volunteer-based grocery delivery program. They envision a community where all seniors and people living with disabilities are nourished, included, and can age with dignity in the setting of their own choice.

"Over the next three years, Store to Door is focused on deepening our service to the seniors and adults living with disabilities that we serve,” said Mark Fulop, Executive Director at Store to Door. “We are excited to enter into this partnership with NW Natural, whose community connections, financial resources, and volunteer expertise will significantly impact our organization and the lives of our homebound clients."

Through Programs of Focus, NW Natural seeks to support organizations making a difference in the community with resources to help grow their capacity. Organizations are selected based on a number of criteria including mission, service area, diversity, equity and inclusion strategies, program effectiveness, and volunteer opportunities for NW Natural employees.

Each year, NW Natural gives nearly $1 million to local nonprofits through its shareholder-fund corporate philanthropy fund. The company’s Programs of Focus are part of this effort. Learn more about the company’s community philanthropy work, here.

About NW Natural

NW Natural is a local distribution company that currently provides natural gas service to approximately 2.5 million people in more than 140 communities through more than 790,000 meters in Oregon and Southwest Washington with one of the most modern pipeline systems in the nation. NW Natural consistently leads the industry with high J.D. Power & Associates customer satisfaction scores. NW Natural, a part of Northwest Natural Holding Company, (NYSE: NWN) (NW Natural Holdings), is headquartered in Portland, Oregon, and has been doing business for more than 160 years. NW Holdings owns NW Natural, NW Natural Renewables Holdings (NW Natural Renewables), NW Natural Water Company (NW Natural Water), and other business interests. We have a longstanding commitment to safety, environmental stewardship, and taking care of our employees and communities. Learn more in our latest ESG Report.