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Portland teen's pandemic delivery service for at-risk groups expands in Oregon, Washington

Neel Jain and other high school volunteers are using their time to deliver groceries to at-risk groups during the COVID-19 pandemic.

PORTLAND, Ore. — A high school student's pandemic-inspired delivery service for at-risk groups is getting national attention and expanding to new parts of Oregon and Washington.

Neel Jain is a junior at Westview High School in Portland.

He started PDX Concierge this spring as a free grocery-delivery service to seniors and vulnerable groups during the COVID-19 pandemic. He was inspired by his own grandmother, who has asthma.

"Me and my family, we started helping her with the shopping," Jain said. "But then I just realized that there's probably plenty of other older people and people who are in the high risk categories who are scared to leave their homes."

Clients do not pay for delivery, but instead reimburse PDX Concierge for the groceries.

When KGW spoke with Jain in May, he had completed about 40 deliveries.

"I'm so amazed and so grateful that he and his friends are doing this," said Regina Brody, a customer.

Since then, new volunteers reached out from across the Portland area and as far south as Roseburg to help get involved. Many volunteers are in high school.

Together, this expanded network has completed about 200 deliveries, spanning Portland, Beaverton, Clackamas, Tigard, Eugene, Salem, Roseburg and Vancouver, Washington.

MSNBC also recently featured Jain on its national network.

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Jain also developed a mobile app for iPhone users to help streamline the PDX Concierge Service.

Credit: Neel Jain/PDX Concierge
PDX Concierge iOS mobile app

As wildfires burn across Oregon, Jain has also widened his philanthropic goals. He designed T-shirts, with proceeds going to local firefighters and frontline workers.

Credit: Neel Jain/PDX Concierge

He hopes through all his efforts, others can help give back, too.

"I thought I had some extra time, and I wanted to put it to some use," Jain said.

Jain encouraged people who want to volunteer to reach out to PDX Concierge online.

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