For several months Ronnie Timperon, better known as Chappy Ronnie, has been looking into ways of supporting families and individuals in the Rainbow Beach community who may be finding it hard to put food on the table, as well as paying all those necessary bills that come in every month.
She informs us that the 2020 Foodbank Hunger Report released some disturbing facts, stating that COVID-19 has increased the demand for food relief across all age groups with 3 in 10 Australians now experiencing food insecurity.
This is an increase of 47%, with young people aged between 18 and 25 being the hardest hit.
Food-insecure Australians are seeking assistance from charities more frequently, with numbers doubling of those seeking food relief at least once a week, and 43% of Australians can go for a whole day a week without eating.
Ronnie says “In our community of Rainbow Beach, there may be people who are struggling to put food on the table and to be able to pay rent, electricity and other bills.
“Whilst St Vinnie’s in Gympie does provide some relief, people must travel into Gympie to access this support, which is not always possible.”
With the support of the Anglican Parish of Gympie, Chappy Ronnie is establishing a Community Pantry in the church hall at the Church of the Good Shepherd in Carlo Road, where perishable and non-perishable items will be available for locals who need a bit of a hand.
Local businesses, supermarkets and takeaways will be approached to donate items that are near their use-by date. Local bakeries and takeaways may be willing to donate leftover bread and vouchers.
Individuals and families can also donate fresh produce and other necessary food and hygiene items.
“As members of this amazing community, we have the opportunity to support others with food that would normally be thrown out or, if they can afford it, individuals buying a few extra groceries to pass on to others,” said Chappy Ronnie.
“Financial donations would also be welcome to purchase needed items that have not already been donated. Also, if local gardeners have an overflow of produce from their garden, they may consider donating it for others to benefit from.”
The Community Pantry plans to be open from 2 – 4pm on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday afternoons for donations to be dropped off and for locals to access needed items.
If you have questions regarding the above or are able to assist in any way, please contact Ronnie on 0413 135 867 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org