Weekly Foodbank service now available in Two Rocks

Foodbank WA is now visiting the Phil Renkin Recreation Centre in Two Rocks each week.

FOODBANK services are now available in Two Rocks with Uniting WA and Foodbank WA working together to help those who are experiencing hardship in Perth’s most northern suburbs.

Foodbank WA is now visiting the Phil Renkin Recreation Centre in Two Rocks each week as well as the Yanchep Community Men’s Shed in Bracknell St, Yanchep.

Uniting WA co-chief executive officer Michael Chester said increasing referrals and demand for Foodbank services in the northern suburbs together with escalating fuel prices, made establishing local services a priority.

Mr Chester said extending the reach of Foodbank WA was something its financial counsellors believed was a real necessity.

“People already hurting from the rising costs of living were also having to curb their travel to vital services as the price of fuel increased,” he said.

The mobile Foodbank service provides a range of food options including frozen meat packs and fruit and vegetable bags.

“It’s unfortunate but highly likely that we’ll continue to see rising demand for our services at Uniting WA and our partners such as Foodbank WA.

“More people are reaching out for our help than we have ever seen before.

“The cost of groceries is rising, the cost of rent and petrol is rising, and now mortgage holders are facing an impending rate hike which in turn may also cause rents of investment properties to increase.

“These circumstances are pushing many Western Australians into financial stress and they are struggling to put food on the table.’’

Foodbank WA estimates that prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, they would see about 200 people a day across their branches but this was now more than 500 a day.

Last financial year Foodbank estimated it provided more than 6.7 million meals to Western Australians – 300,000 more than the previous year with Foodbank WA chief executive officer Kate O’Hara expecting they would provide more than seven million meals this financial year.

“There are still a lot of people going without,’’ she said.

““Food is seen as a discretionary spend because your rent, mortgage and bills are set and need to be paid, the car still needs to be filled.

“Food is where people tend to cut.

“They spend less on groceries, they skip meals to make it work.

“If we can help people reduce their groceries bills, for many that could be the difference that enables them to pay the rent or mortgage and stay in their homes.

Using Foodbank WA Services: To obtain a referral, people need to contact a referring partner such as Uniting WA (phone 9220 1255), any other financial counselling service within the Financial Counselling Network (www.financialcounsellingnetwork.org.au), the National Debt Helpline (ph: 1800 007 007) or the Emergency Relief & Food Access Service (ERFAS) (ph: 1800 979 777).

To qualify for a six-month referral, people must demonstrate they are in financial difficulty.

For most people this will simply require them to show their Centrelink benefits card and their picture ID.

For other people, it will mean a short discussion about their current financial situation.

At present the mobile Foodbank is in Yanchep on Tuesdays from 9.30am to 10.30am and then is in Two Rocks from 11.30am to 12.15pm on the same day but you can visit Foodbank WA to confirm dates, times and locations as they are occasionally subject to change.

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