Boosting food relief for Ballarat in time for the holidays
The Victorian Government is strengthening food relief services across Ballarat ensuring healthy food reaches locals in need.
Member for Buninyong Michaela Settle and Member for Wendouree Juliana Addison today announced that local organisations Ballarat Neighbourhood Centre, Ballarat Seventh-day Adventist Church and Uniting Care Ballarat will share in over $145,000 as part of the Victorian Government’s commitment to ensuring all Victorians have access to fresh, healthy food.
The $5 million Community Food Relief Fund is part of the recently announced $11.3 million investment to boost food relief activities for vulnerable Victorians.
The package builds on $7.4 million already announced earlier this year to expand food relief operations and deliver more free and nutritious meals, which is creating 119 new food relief jobs.
Ballarat Neighborhood House converts rescued and donated food into an average of 260 meals and around 70 hampers each week. The grant will help them to collect more food, deliver bulk drops to community partners who will distribute on our behalf, and to reach those isolated community members who are currently unable to access the centre for collection.
Breezeway will use their funds to purchase additional equipment to prepare meals for the community and Ballarat Seventh Day Adventist Church will use the grant to upgrade the Good Samaritan Centre Food Distribution Facility with a new shed and cool room.
The local projects are part of 93 organisations across the state that are being supported thanks to the Community Food Relief Fund. The 93 projects will enable food relief organisations to provide an additional 2,000,000 meals and 180,000 food hampers to Victorians in need.
In addition to the Community Food Relief Fund, the Victorian Government is also investing in the network of food distribution hubs in regional areas, with $3.5 million to strengthen the link between suppliers and those experiencing food insecurity.
A Food Relief Taskforce is also being established to bring together key industry leaders and representatives from all tiers of government to ensure food supply and distribution is coordinated and targeted to areas most in need.
For more information on the Community Food Relief Fund and to see all recipients, please visit www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/community-inclusion-and-food-relief-coronavirus-covid-19
Quotes attributable to Member for Buninyong Michaela Settle
“These grants will make a real difference for local community members who are struggling to put food on the table.”
“We’re making sure our local food relief system is be able to support people when and where they need it.”
“Every Victorian deserves access to fresh and healthy food – which is why we’re boosting resources for community-based food relief services.”
Quotes attributable to Member for Wendouree Juliana Addison
“Local organisations like the Ballarat Neighbourhood Centre do an incredible job of supporting our community through times of hardship. These targeted food relief grants will support our Ballarat organisations to continue their excellent work.”
Quotes attributable to Vicki Coltman CEO of Ballarat Neighbourhood Centre
“In March we recognised many of our clients would struggle with access to food, so quickly changed our regular community meals to food parcels. As we wrap up 2020, our fabulous team of volunteers and learners with support from our community have produced nearly 7000 meals helping 875 families.”
“This grant will help us in 2021 continue to support our clients and families who most need our help.”
Local recipients of the Victorian Government’s Community Food Relief Fund:
|Ballarat Seventh- day Adventist Church||Upgrade of the Good Samaritan Centre Food Distribution Facility by building a 12 by 8 metre shed on aconcrete slab, with access to electricity for power, lighting, heating and cooling, that is fully lined andinsulated, well secured, and vermin proofed, in which to be able to store refrigerated food as well as staples.||$67,000|
|Ballarat Neighbourhood Centre||Feed Local, Free Food Fridays to be expanded to collect more food, deliver more bulk drops to communitypartners who will distribute on our behalf and support those in need.||$35,000|
|Uniting Care Ballarat||Breezeway Kitchen – provide additional commercial equipment to meet increased demand including ablast chiller, vacuum packing equipment additional freezer space, specialised smaller kitchen equipment.||$43,767|