It is not uncommon for Mrs. A, a teacher at a local Geelong Primary School, to bring a sandwich for lunch from home. Nor is it out of place for her to bring in an entire bag of sandwiches for her students, each round individually wrapped up and ready to give away.
Because some of her students aren’t provided with food from home and attend school hungry. Adults are no longer the face of hunger. As Rumbling Tummies: Child Hunger in Australia (Foodbank Australia, April 2018) noted more than one in five Australian children (22%) have experienced food insecurity in the last 12 months.
However, thanks to your Feed Geelong donations, students like these in our community, who otherwise would have gone hungry, are being provided with lunch.
Last year Eat Up Australia received a grant of $2,000 to ensure that vulnerable children have access to nutritionally adequate lunches at school. Making sure these children don’t go hungry supports them to take advantage of learning opportunities and to succeed at school.
The grant allowed Eat Up to increase their reach and support two additional Geelong schools. Currently 15 schools take part in the program which assists approximately 450 primary and secondary school students.
The program is simple. Every three weeks sandwiches are made by volunteers, which are then delivered fresh to participating schools. From there, the local schools work with their teachers who identify and distribute sandwiches directly to students in need.
The program highlights the interconnections within our community as students from Geelong College and Deakin University volunteered to prepare the sandwiches. In addition, parents and staff from both organisations donate their time and have provided their cars to assist with deliveries.
Over the course of the year, this simple support has taken pressure off teachers like Mrs. A.
“When we first spoke with Mrs. A and offered our service, she was close to tears. She was so grateful that most of all, her students could be supported. She now has more time to do what she does best, which is teaching the kids, whilst still being confident that she is teaching to a fed and engaged classroom.” Eat Up Australia.
With the aim of addressing Geelong’s food insecurity crisis, Feed Geelong raises awareness and valuable funds to assist our region’s emergency food relief system which is working on a daily basis to help men, women and children in our community who are struggling to put three nutritious meals on the table each day.