Rural Community Builder Name: David & Pat Bayus

Community: Newport, Oregon

Role: Committee chairs – Brown Bag Lunch and Hunger Response (Sacred Heart Church)

What is one word or phrase that describes this person as an RCB: Forward movement!

Recognized by: Lola Jones

Tell us a bit about what you appreciate about them as an RCB: I met David and Pat at my church after working with our priest and parish council to survey members about how they would like to be involved in serving our community. Hunger (and meal provision) was identified as a top priority.

Dave and Pat responded to an ad in our parish bulletin asking for a leader to head up the committee to establish a brown bag lunch program. They worked tirelessly to plan the logistics of how the lunches would be purchased, prepared and served (even pricing out the cost to the cent on turkey slices) and then we were hit with the pandemic right as we were planning to begin the program.

Rather than getting discouraged and retreating, David and Pat kept our committee together and maintained communication with our partner churches to help bring food boxes to our community after the Labor Day wildfires. When they encountered obstacles, they co-created solutions with others and kept the focus on our initial purpose – helping hungry people get fed.

As a human services professional, I am often humbled by the commitment of everyday citizens. They are not paid or compensated to do what they do, they simply see a problem and raise their hand to say – I CAN HELP!