Portland Pay It Forward, of Portland TN, opened its doors in 2017 with a commitment to help those in our community who struggle with their most basic needs. What started as a simple food pantry has grown into something much bigger thanks to the great support of our local residents and businesses.
Today in 2022, in addition to providing meals to over 350 families every other week, we also provide hygiene products, baby and elder care supplies, and host a Facebook page where residents can request and/or offer free items to each other. In addition, local businesses and schools have held toy, canned food, and winter coat drives allowing Portland Pay It Forward to pass out these items to those in need.
On a yearly basis, one of our goals is to provide a Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner to our families in need. We have also held Easter Egg hunts and provided high school students in need with a full prom experience. In short, our desire is to help Portland residents! Thankfully, we are able to provide needed aid due to the generous support and donations from our Portland residents, businesses, churches, schools, and so many others.
So, thank you Portland, TN—YOU ROCK!
Our mission is to meet the immediate and most basic needs of our local community with a nonjudgmental attitude and "no questions asked" policy.
I moved to Portland in 1999 to raise my children in a small town. I sat idle for many years with dreams of making a difference. Portland Pay It Forward (PPIF) landed in my lap in 2018. At first, I worked with churches to get a few donations and then used my own money to buy groceries and basic items of need for fellow community members. A local business started giving us bread, and PPIF went from serving 5 families to serving almost 250 families at our most recent food giveaway.
My inspiration comes from the love and passion my mother felt for others. She taught me compassion, love, and most of all, forgiveness. She passed in 2019, but I still strive to make her proud. My life experiences have taught me what it’s like to be in need. I’ve felt the helplessness and despair of not knowing how I was going to feed my kids, or to feed them and go hungry myself.
My overall goal for PPIF is to see the sense of community return to Portland, and for it to grow stronger, by taking care of those around me, regardless of race, age, religion, or income bracket. There is strength in numbers. There is strength in community. There can be strength in Portland, TN!
Copyright © 2022 Portland Pay It Forward - All Rights Reserved.
Portland Pay It Forward does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, age, national origin, disability, marital status, or sexual orientation in any of its activities or operations.