ARK project is out of food

The ARK Project needs food donations to fill its shelves.

Contributed photo

COOS BAY – The ARK Project is out of food.

Since the start of the new school year, more homeless youth and their families have come to the At Risk Kids (ARK) Project for help. Overwhelmingly, these families are from out of the area and don't know anyone here.

“They came into homelessness through unfortunate events, just really down on their luck and have never been homeless before,” said Melinda Torres, ARK Project program manager and homeless liaison. “A lot of the time they need an emergency food box after their first visit because people are running out of food themselves.”

Banner Bank is holding a food drive at it's Coos Bay location throughout the rest of September for the ARK. Torres asks that the public donate both non-perishable canned goods, as well as perishable fresh food that can go into the emergency food boxes they hand out.

“We're excited that Banner Bank is doing this for us,” Torres said. “When we are able to give food to these families, to these kids, their faces are so thankful because they don't know where else to go. The ARK is a good starting point for them, and those emergency food boxes are good for a couple days. We continue to help them until they are on their feet.”

Just last year alone, the ARK Project served over 350 families and individual students.

“They just need some extra support,” Torres said. “That's why we're here.”

Reporter Jillian Ward can be reached at 541-269-1222, ext. 235, or by email at Follow her on Twitter: @JE_Wardwriter.