The Kempsey community is being encouraged to get behind a new food rescue service that aims to support some of the most disadvantaged people in the town.
REAP Coordinator Katrina Humble was thrilled to be establishing the program in Kempsey after her recent success with the service in Port Macquarie.
“REAP is a program based on the OzHarvest food rescue model for volunteers in regional areas that helps connect local food business donors with local charities,” Ms Humble said.
“We are hoping to grow REAP in Kempsey to help the refuges, breakfast programs, neighbourhood centres and the people that use these facilities.”
“Thanks to a grant from the ETC Community Support Fund we have been able to get this off the ground.”
According to Ms Humble Kempsey had been identified as one of the most socially disadvantaged areas in Australia.
“It has three times the national average of Indigenous population. The local organisations are struggling to support their clients,” she said.
“So we hope to help them by giving their clients food so they can redirect their funding to other vital services.”
Ms Humble and her team started to roll out the REAP Kempsey project back in August and has seen a significant increase in the food rescued.
“Back in August we managed to salvage 106kgs of food which has now grown to over 500kgs in May,” Ms Humble said.
“We’re currently donating to the Kempsey Neighbourhood Centre, New Horizons, Womens Refuge and the Youth Refuge.”
Ms Humble encouraged people in the local community to jump on board and play their part.
“We need more volunteers to help with collecting and sorting of goods. Also if any local businesses can donate meat, clothes and toiletry items that would be appreciated,” she said.
To find out more about how you can get involved with the REAP project in Kempsey contact Katrina on 0413 309 385.
ETC’s Deputy Chair Lorraine Penn said it was a pleasure to be able to support the REAP Kempsey Project.
“The ETC Community Support Fund is designed to help organisations reduce disadvantage, generate opportunity, increase support services and/or build capacity in the communities in which we operate,” Ms Penn said.
“ETC is proud to be a not-for-profit company and we are confident the money we are donating will help make a more positive future for our community.”
ETC provides employment, training and business services on the Mid North Coast. If you need help finding a job, are looking for staff or are interested in up-skilling, contact ETC on 1800 007 400 or visit www.etcltd.com.au.