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Community Church Kyabram ‘Foodbarn’ manager Wendy Townsend with fresh fruit and vegetables available to those in need.
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Local food charity services have implored Kyabram residents in need to reach out and seek help, rather than going hungry during these troubled times.
The Kyabram Community and Learning Centre, Community Church Kyabram and Salvation Army came together this week to send a message and promise of support to the local community. All operate free food services and representatives for all three said they were more than willing to help those in need of food, whatever the reason.
The charity on offer was highlighted this week due to local residents being placed into isolation and quarantine as a result of attending COVID-19 exposure sites and a strong community rally around the three organisations, helped in part by social media groups such as Kyabram Community Connections.
KCLC chief executive Jen Savage said it saddened her to think that anyone would let themselves or their family go hungry because they were too embarrassed to reach out.
Overcoming such feelings is as easy as “paying it forward” when circumstances change through volunteer work or donations, Ms Savage said, which many people chose to do.
“When they’re until they are back on their feet again, then they can pay it forward. Don’t worry about what you’re taking now. It’s there to be taken and used,” she said.
KCLC supports between 10 and 30 families weekly with tailored food packages, sourced from funding grants and the good work of organisations such as Foodbank Victoria and Shepparton Food Share in Mooroopna.
It is easy to ask for help, Ms Savage said — Telstra’s new free payphone policy meant anyone could call the three organisations (the numbers are listed at the end of this story).
Due to current lockdown rules, all three are practising a form of contactless pick-up and all three can also deliver.
KCLC will attempt to tailor a hamper to the dietary requirements and family size of those in need, according to Ms Savage, and can draw on funds granted by the state and federal governments for special needs.
Community Church Kyabram’s David Lloyd thanked Wendy Townsend who manages the church’s ‘Foodbarn’ facility, which opens Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays between 9am and noon at the rear of the church on 64-66 McEwen Rd.
The church will also deliver, and also draws on Food Share and Foodbank.
The Salvation Army’s Jacky Targett said issues with local grocery delivery made it particularly hard for those who found themselves in quarantine or isolation but wanted to stress lockdown rules meant those who had not attended an exposure site were permitted to travel to purchase food.
“The challenge of course is that Woolworths and IGA — neither do home delivery, and that puts the pressure on other services,” she said.
A recent outpouring of support and an increase in volunteers was welcomed by the charity organisers, particularly the assistance coming from the Kyabram Community Connections Facebook page founded by local teacher Sue Meeking.
In turn, Ms Meeking said she wanted to thank her friend Liz Dillion and all the others who had been lending support via the group.
“We just wanted to support the services that were already doing a great job,” she said.
Anyone in need of support can contact:
Kyabram Community and Learning Centre, (03) 5852 0000
Community Church Kyabram, ‘Foodbarn,’ 0429 382 623
The Salvation Army Kyabram Corps, (03) 5852 3875
To lend a hand contact the above or visit:
Kyabram Community Connections on Facebook
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