May 27, 2022

AWS Donates $2 Million to Organizations in Eastern Oregon

AWS Donates $2 Million to Organizations in Eastern Oregon

As part of our continued effort to invest in local communities, AWS has increased its support for a number of initiatives.

The Eastern Oregon Mission (EOM) has served as the community food bank for greater Hermiston, Oregon, for the past 36 years. It serves the area’s most vulnerable citizens, including the elderly, children, low-income individuals, single-parent families, the homeless, and those who have recently lost their jobs.

However, the number of requests for food assistance continues to rise, and the group is experiencing difficulties.

EOM has purchased a much-needed pickup truck and trailer thanks to a grant from Amazon Web Services (AWS), which will, according to Gomolski, assist in “lower maintenance costs, which are savings we can deploy elsewhere.”

EOM’s Weekend Backpack Program, which feeds 275 food-insecure students during the week when schools are closed, will also benefit from the donation.

Thanks to a $2 million investment from AWS, numerous local non-profits, and community organizations in Morrow and Umatilla counties will be able to grow their work and continue to make a positive difference in their communities.

AWS InCommunities, the company’s community outreach program aimed to support its neighbours and enhance the areas where AWS operates, is making a contribution.

Since 2011, AWS has been present in Eastern Oregon. Since then, AWS data centers and related operations have contributed more than $1.7 billion in GDP to the local economy and support an average of 2,000 jobs annually, the majority of which are skilled technical roles, thanks to capital investments totaling more than $15 billion in Morrow and Umatilla counties.

AWS has invested in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education, equity, and access, as well as local tech upskilling and environmental stewardship programs, through AWS InCommunities. AWS InCommunities strengthens its support in these locations with this new investment and continues to assist groups that address local community issues.

The funds will be used to help expand programs that are already helping people and families in Eastern Oregon. The following are some of the organizations and programs that have benefited:

  • Organizations such as EOM, Boardman Food Pantry, Conrad Skinner Memorial Veterans, Neighborhood Center of South Morrow County, and Irrigon Boardman Emergency Assistance Center have received nearly $800,000 in support of community housing needs, food insecurity, veteran services, and community engagement events.
  • Over $800,000 has been donated to organisations that promote STEM education, equity, and access. The Umatilla School District Robotics Program and Greater Oregon (GO)-STEM are among the recipients. GO-STEM is responsible for a number of programs, including the shipping of STEM kits to 4th graders in Eastern Oregon, a Mobile Makers Lab, and an updated lending library for local schools.
  • Over $800,000 has been contributed to organizations dedicated to STEM education, equity, and accessibility. Among the awardees are the Umatilla School District Robotics Program and Greater Oregon (GO)-STEM. GO-STEM is in charge of a number of initiatives, including the distribution of STEM kits to 4th graders in Eastern Oregon, the creation of a Mobile Makers Lab, and an upgraded lending library for area schools.
  • Almost $250,000 to support the expansion of environmental stewardship programs, such as the Grande Ronde Model Watershed program, the Confederated Tribes of Umatilla Indian Reservation First Foods Garden, and the GO-STEM for an Environmental Education grant, which will upskill educators in environmental science and its application in the community.
  • Approximately $150,000 to organizations that support employment growth through tech upskilling and on-the-job training, such as additional scholarships for Blue Mountain Community College’s Data Center Technician program and the Port of Morrow’s Workforce Training programs.


We believe we have a responsibility to make a positive impact in the communities where we operate, and with this investment, we will not only continue to support STEM education, tech upskilling, and environmental stewardship programs, but we will also broaden our scope to include food insecurity, homelessness, veteran services, and other critical initiatives “Cornelia Robinson, AWS Inclusion and Outreach’s global leader, said as much.

AWS has also set aside $320,000 for two community grants that will be open to individuals, community groups, and nonprofits who want to start or extend community projects that support STEM education, environmental sustainability, economic development, or community prosperity and well-being. AWS will award funding to more than 20 local projects in Morrow County through the initial fund. The second fund will award grants to Umatilla County initiatives. ChangeX, a charity that connects communities with proven ideas and financing so they can lead transformative projects in their areas, will manage both grants.


Comments are closed.