Carpenter Cheer

Giving Back to the Community

Around the country, carpenters create change in their communities through their craft. At this time of year, members from around our region are giving back with the gift of charity.

photo of montana families receiving turkeys

Montana Local 82 partners with Essential Eats Distributors to support Indigenous Communities

This last November Montana carpenters partnered with Essential Eats Distributors (EED) to deliver over 700 turkey dinners for indigenous families. Coordinated by Local 82 member Derek Hitt, members drove 150 turkeys out to the Northern Cheyenne Council, who then distributed the turkeys among families.

Food shortages are common in remote parts of Montana, where isolated communities face extreme weather and lack the infrastructure to reliably deliver basic needs. EED works hard to bring food to First Nations people across the state. “There are a ton of federal programs [on Native lands].” Sara Wecker, the founder of EED notes, “But very few nonprofits that provide food are out that way.”

Many tribes and their lands are located in these out-of-the-way areas and so they end up relying on outside aid for what they cannot provide themselves through farming or hunting.

Over 14 elk also were donated to EED by a federal program. Local 82 members helped transport nearly 5 tons of elk (the average elk can weigh around 700lbs) to Ronan, where many were processed and then brought out to the Blackfeet Nation and the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes (CSKT).  Some of the elk were even donated to local programs and schools, where participants learn how to traditionally clean and tan the hides to create tipis.

Fort Belknap receives turkeys

If you would like to donate to Essential Eats Distribution you can do so via their facebook page

Carpenter Cheer Around The Council

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Boise, ID

Local Union 635 donates to the Boise Police Association’s “Shop with a Cop” program. Kids who are disadvantaged or victims of a crime, go with police officers to shop for Christmas gifts for themselves and other family members.

Kennewick, WA

For the 10th year in a row, Carpenter members and other community volunteers assembled brand new bikes for kids in the Tri-Cities area. The program is sponsored by UA Local 598 Plumbers and Steamfitters.

Kennewick Bikes for Tykes Event
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LOCAL 1281 CHARITY Anchorage, AK

Local 1281 holds two separate events: a Kids Christmas Party and an Adult Christmas Party. Gifts are given to the children at both parties.

Portland, OR • Kent, WA

Picture of children recieving toys from Santa at the Portland Toy Drive
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Picture of kids meeting Santa at the Kent Toy Drive

At the 21st Holiday Toy Drive in Portland, Oregon over 1,100 toys were donated along with over $6,000 in monetary donations from contractors. This year marks an expansion of the Holiday Toy Drive into the Seattle metro area where toys were donated by union contractors, members, and their families to help others in need. We extend a heartfelt thank you to everyone that participated.

Portland, OR

Friday morning started like any morning for the two classrooms of kids at the Albina Head Start program in Portland, until their routine was interrupted by a surprise visit from Santa. The NW Carpenters Union have been working with the Portland Trailblazers for the last 5 years to provide toys, clothes, and cupcakes to around 30 preschool aged kids.

Regional Council representatives played Santa and the elves, and were met with huge smiles, hugs, and high fives. We are proud of the partnership with the Trailblazers, and proud to bring joy to the 30 kids at Albina Head Start. We look forward to this day each holiday season and look forward to doing it again in 2020.

Did You Know?

PNWRCC has many women in our crafts and leadership positions.

Margaret Ellings became the first woman initiated into the United Brotherhood of Carpenters in October 1935. The establishment of a women’s committee within the United Brotherhood of Carpenters is one of the most important developments in the union’s recent history. Visit


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