The History of Operation Hand Up

Operation Hand Up (OHU) was founded in 1998 in response to the complexity of economic and social issues in the Inland Empire region of Southern California. Currently OHU occupies a 5,600 square-foot facility for the distribution of food, clothing, diapers, baby formula, hygiene products, and various miscellaneous items. These items are distributed at no cost to the community on a weekly basis. We also provide food and hygiene items to over forty other organizations that distribute on a weekly basis. In the year 2016, over 500,000 people received food; and additionally over 8,000,000 lbs of food was picked up through our distribution center.

Our 5,600 square foot Food Distribution Center is a privately-funded feeding program that provides food and other necessities to clients on our local campus at no cost. Operation Hand Up owns and operates tractor trailers that haul food and hygiene products to our campus for distribution. Our large walk-in refrigerator allows us to keep the food fresh and minimizes spoilage.

The majority of clients seeking emergency food assistance are households that are living below the federal poverty line. In fact, 74% of households served by our Food Distribution Center have annual incomes below the federal poverty level, or less than $17,163 a year for a household of three. The average monthly income for a household served is $940 and the average yearly household income is $13,030.

Giving thousands of school supplies, backpacks, shoes, and groceries to parents and children.

In addition to living in poverty, recipients of emergency food typically have limited resources from which to draw when struggling with financial difficulties. Ten percent of client households are homeless. Additionally, our food distribution clients are often faced with making choices between food and other basic needs. More than one in three emergency food recipients must choose between an everyday necessity and sufficient food.

Our Mission Statement

Operation Hand Up is a 501 C-3 public benefit non-profit corporation that exists to bring helping hands to those who are in need of mending and restoration in the affairs of their everyday lives. We bring assistance through providing food and vital resources to our local community, afterschool care programs to our children and youth, vocational training and GED classes to the adult community, and general counseling and resource aid to the homeless population in our valley.

We believe that we are a part of changing the economic landscape that will bring hope and a future to the San Bernardino area, which will promote business activity back to this area.

Programs & Services

How Can You Help?

Operation Hand Up depends on the generosity and support of concerned individuals, foundations, corporations, and manufacturers in order to provide food relief to over 500,000 hungry people each year.

Donations to OHU have no administrative cost, and accordingly, 100% of donations are utilized toward food purchase, food distribution and transportation.

Each week volunteers provide individuals with food and nutritional assistance at no cost.


Each year volunteers of all ages assist in the fight against hunger by volunteering in the Food Distribution Center. Volunteers sort food and grocery products, pack grocery bags, answer questions, and staff special events.

Volunteers are essential to the operation of the Food Distribution Center. This program could not exist without them. For more information on how you can be a part of this awesome program, please get in touch.


We would love for you to partner with us by donating any amount to help us continue to reach those in need. As a 501(c)(3) public benefit non-profit corporation, all donation are tax-deductible. Donations from Corporate entities are also encouraged and appreciated.

Contact Us

We would love to hear from you.

(909) 835-1313
2345 South Waterman Ave
San Bernardino, Ca 92408