Hundreds of vulnerable families, elderly people and members of the local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities have benefitted from a new community partnership in Wyong.
Earlier this year, Yerin Eleanor Duncan Aboriginal Health Centre and Village Central Wyong teamed up to launch a new program to provide vulnerable community members with welfare packs containing a variety of foods sourced from local business partners, Sanitarium, Coles and OzHarvest.
The program launched in July and is to wrap up at the end of October, with hundreds of northerners spared from food insecurity as a result of the partnership.
Village Central has supported the project by offering a retail space to Yerin free of charge.
The space is currently being used as the Yerin Welfare Packs Pick Up Centre, with volunteers meeting there to put together the packs and arrange pick up with eligible Yerin clients and community organisations like NAISDA and Wyong Neighbourhood Centre.
Yerin Health Promotions Officers, Allan Beale and Dean Murray, have spearheaded the project and according to Beale, over 1,600 packs have been distributed throughout the community thus far.
It’s a number that everyone at Yerin is proud of and one that could see a more permanent program installed in the near future.
“Our senior staff are due to meet once the program wraps up to discuss whether it’s feasible to keep the program going.
“We’ve helped a lot of people, but we still have a lot of vulnerable clients.
“At the end of the day, we just want to make sure that no one in our community goes hungry,” Beale said.