Amazon’s longstanding partnership fuels FareStart’s mission

March 25, 2021

Amazon has supported FareStart in so many ways for so long, it’s hard to list them all. From one year to the next, they’ve stepped up and deepened their commitment to our mission: transforming lives, disrupting poverty, and nourishing communities through food, life skills and job training. To continue our mission critical work, Amazon is donating $250,000 to help expand FareStart’s hunger relief operations and support community programs across the Seattle area.

Since 2011, Amazon has provided more than $17 million in-kind and cash donations, contributed more than $2 million in revenue to FareStart’s catering business, and provided consultancy services and space to help FareStart optimize its growing catering business. Additionally, Amazon employees have volunteered more than a thousand hours with FareStart each year in a variety of ways, from waiting tables at FareStart Guest Chef Nights to harvesting produce grown on Amazon’s rooftop gardens, which we put in our meals. They’ve served on our Board of Directors, given generously as donors, and organized fundraising golf tournaments.

Amazon has provided financial support for events like our annual Great Food Better Lives Gala & Auction, which has helped us raise millions of dollars over the years. They’ve donated space for job training that’s helped create pathways out of poverty for both adults and youth.

“Amazon is always there for us, always rolling up their sleeves, always eager to join us in figuring out new ways to make life better for our students and our communities as a whole,” says Megan Hampson, FareStart director of philanthropy.

Pandemic Pivot

When COVID-19 hit, Amazon and their employees leaned in to lend their support. The in-kind facility they donated for job training was transformed into a meal production hub to address the growing food insecurity in the wake of the pandemic. Over 800,000 meals were produced out of this one facility alone. They also underwrote the costs of Gourmondo’s workforce, a Seattle-based catering company, to produce an additional 300,000 emergency meals. Amazon also donated meat, dairy, produce and other products to supplement our meals and keep our costs as low as possible. 

“At Amazon, we use our scale and force for good to help strengthen the communities in which we serve,” says Bettina Stix, Amazon’s Director of Right Now Needs and Disaster Relief and FareStart Board Member. “Through our strategic partnership with FareStart, we are able to increase access to basic needs and resources to help children and their families, and ultimately the Puget Sound region, thrive.” 

Amazon donated thousands of in-kind product items from jackets to storage bins to help FareStart students and FareStart’s Catalyst Kitchens members across the country as they navigated the challenges of COVID-19.

Amazon Treasure Trucks partnered with FareStart and donated delivery services to deliver thousands of meals to Seattle Housing Authority, YMCA, King County Housing Authority sites. They also lent their trucks and teams to help Catalyst Kitchen members in Baltimore, New York, Phoenix, Portland, San Antonio, San Francisco and San Jose deliver nearly 900,000 meals across their respective communities. 

In addition to supporting FareStart with in-kind products, services, and cash donations throughout the pandemic, Amazon has donated delivery services to food banks, schools, and community organizations to get more than 12 million meals directly to the doorsteps of vulnerable groups in more than 25 U.S. cities and in communities in Australia, Japan, Singapore, Spain, and the U.K. 

We are grateful for all the innovative ways that partners like Amazon help us continuously evolve to meet the needs of our community — one student, one job, one meal at a time.