Who we are:
Amalie Roberts, directrice
Victory Project PDX is a nonprofit enterprise concepted after my experiences of
volunteering in soup kitchens and overnight shelters, and after years of working in Portland’s food and wine community. Our mission involves culinary skill exploration for populations with obstacles to employment.
The food world in Portland has taken a dramatic change in the last few years, so after many years in the wine and restaurant scene, it was time to address food in a way that took into account the people who need it most. I believe it is possible to reimagine the city’s food industry in ways that actually address inequality rather than accentuate it.
The ideas and inspiration for Victory Project PDX are informed by organizations visited in Seattle and San Francisco but is particularly based on programs I visited in the UK. There we find many public-private project and partnerships working jointly to help disenfranchised populations. Major corporations, such as Harrod’s Department Store and food giant Tesco, help do the work of creating meals, gleaning food, and providing safe spaces for all. These places provide services for the needy and have also become attractive spaces for neighbors and tourists alike, with much thanks to famed Italian chef Massimo Bottura and his “Food For Soul” project that has created five such spaces around the world.
Our strength is our experienced and dedicated board. Kelley Roy, the owner of ADX: Industrial arts workshop and maker space, also sits on the board of the Enhanced Services District in Central Eastside. She is a strong ally and a voice in that local business alliance. Beth Burns, co-founder of P:ear and active champion for youth, has mentored your people in Portland for 16 years. Rounding out our group is Joe Sacco, an award-winning cartoonist with a wide reputation for addressing issues of conflict in the US and abroad.