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Warm Hearts Winter Drive: Helping Today for Tomorrow’s Solution

by Karlie Watts | Nov 19, 2018

This month we embark on our fourth annual Warm Hearts Winter Drive to benefit families and individuals struggling with homelessness in the Northwest. We invite you to join us by supporting our neighbors in need during these cold winter months.

Since 2015, Columbia Bank and its employees have partnered with friends, family, clients and community members to raise half a million dollars and more than 25,000 warm winter items in support of their local shelters and aid organizations throughout Washington, Oregon and Idaho.

Our collective impact has been profound for thousands of our neighbors who have received shelter and warm clothing during the coldest months of the year.

Yet, the need for support and funding for those who struggle with homelessness remains critical. According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, more than 37,000 people in Washington, Oregon and Idaho are struggling with homelessness.

In an effort to expand upon the Warm Hearts mission, we are pleased to announce a new program during this campaign: Warm Homes. The inaugural Warm Homes giving program is awarding $200,000 directly to four nonprofit organizations working to restore shelter, hope and warmth through innovative housing and shelter programs. The nonprofits receiving these grants have identified long-term, impactful solutions targeted at breaking the cycle of homelessness. While our Warm Hearts Winter Drive provides critical support needed during the coldest months of the year, the Warm Homes program is designed to support strategies that will help people transition out of homelessness.

As a catalyst for Warm Homes, we are providing $200,000 in grants to four outstanding partner organizations in the Northwest that facilitate long-term housing solutions in our major market areas. These organizations are Helping Hands Reentry Outreach Centers, Share Vancouver, Shared Housing Services and Mary’s Place, who will each receive a $50,000 one-time grant.

As we head into the winter season, employees at all of Columbia Bank’s 150 branches are actively engaged in raising funds and collecting warm weather items. These donations directly benefit shelters and relief organizations in the communities where the collections originated. Among the list of more than 50 benefiting organizations are the Portland Rescue Mission, Mary’s Place, Tacoma Rescue Mission, Eugene Mission and Bonner Homeless Transition in Idaho.

For more information on the list of benefitting organizations in each county, or to make a donation, please visit Warm Hearts Winter Drive.

The crisis of homelessness in the Northwest is enormous, but together we can help make a difference today and for our future.



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