Feed Ballarat Appeal launched to fight city’s hidden hunger

A new fundraising campaign is creating a united effort to address food insecurity in Ballarat

The Feed Ballarat Appeal is a call to action to ensure every person, child, and family has continuous access to safe and nutritious food.

RELIEF: Harvest Ministry of Food supervisor Pam Halliday helps distribute food to people in need as part of their foodbank program on Friday. Picture: Kate Healy

 RELIEF: Harvest Ministry of Food supervisor Pam Halliday helps distribute food to people in need as part of their foodbank program on Friday. Picture: Kate Healy

The Ballarat Foundation campaign draws inspiration from the Feed Melbourne Appeal, which has raised $4 million in 10 years to help fight the city’s hidden hunger.

Ballarat Foundation chief executive Matt Jenkins said the Feed Ballarat Appeal would bring people together to make a difference to a common cause.

“The issue is complex and needs the entire community to come together to create the change needed,” he said.

short film and study released in the last two months highlighted food insecurity as deeply entrenched in the Ballarat community.

More than one in eight people in Ballarat experience food insecurity.

“The Feed Ballarat Appeal makes it simple to get behind the cause, rather than having to choose a specific charity or agency to donate to. The foundation can then direct resources gathered to where the greatest needs exist,” Mr Jenkins said.

Money raised through the ongoing campaign will be spread between three priorities: emergency relief grants for food charities, food system infrastructure in the form of a Foodbank warehouse, and prevention and education grants to create long term change.

The issue is complex and needs the entire community to come together to create the change needed.

Matt Jenkins, Ballarat Foundation chief executive

“Right now we have the frontline challenge of providing enough food to those in need today,” Mr Jenkins said.

“When it starts to get more complex is changing a generational hunger, helping people be more educated about how they can solve some of these challenges themselves and putting systems in place to prevent people from ever having to suffer food insecurity.

“A big part of the short term goal is to get the funding for a Foodbank warehouse. Early on a large chunk of funds will go to infrastructure, secondly emergency relief and thirdly prevention and education. Over time that will shift once the infrastructure is developed.”

The Ballarat Foundation is calling on the community to get behind the Feed Ballarat Appeal by donating, fundraising, advocating for the campaign, using the hashtag #feedballarat, or volunteering, to help reach their $3.5 million fundraising target.

Gold coin donations at the Plate Up Ballarat Hump Day Pop Up Food Truck event on Wednesday raised more than $1000 for the cause.

Visit https://feedballarat.org/ or contact the Ballarat Foundation.

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