Benalla residents can help wage a war against hunger this winter by joining local efforts in raising funds to deliver meals to people in need.
With as many as one in eight Australians living below the poverty line, shoppers can show their support to people doing it tough by purchasing a $2 donation card at Coles for SecondBite — a national charity that redistributes surplus fresh food to Australians in need.
Since June 6 for every $2 donated at Coles, SecondBite will provide the equivalent of 10 nutritious meals to disadvantaged Australians.
All funds raised from Coles’ Winter Appeal will help SecondBite to pay for its ongoing operating expenses, such as fuel, transport and refrigeration, so it can deliver the food donated by Coles.
Renowned chefs Curtis Stone and Matt Preston recently united to call on Australians to support the Coles Winter Appeal for SecondBite.
Coles fresh adviser Curtis Stone said an alarming number of people in our community could not afford nutritious food to have regular meals.
‘‘By raising funds through the winter appeal, we hope we can help get more meals on the table for people facing hardship,” Curtis said.
MasterChef Australia judge and SecondBite ambassador Matt Preston said he and Curtis were passionate supporters of the work of SecondBite.
‘‘We love how this charity solves two of the biggest problems facing Australia; the amount of fresh nutritious food going to landfill and a large number of Australians who don’t get enough fresh nutritious food to eat,’’ Matt said.
In addition to the $2 fundraising cards, Coles and Unilever have also banded together to support SecondBite by donating one million cups of soup.
For every pack of Continental soup purchased at Coles supermarkets between June 6 and July 3, Unilever has pledged to donate one cup of Continental soup to SecondBite until the total donations equal one million cups.
Coles state general manager Mark O’Connor encouraged locals to support the important cause this winter.
‘‘We’re proud to donate food to community groups throughout Victoria through our partnership with SecondBite,’’ Mark said.
‘‘But we want to do more to support the increasing number of Aussies who are struggling to put food on the table, which is why we have launched a Winter Appeal for SecondBite.’’
Across Australia, Coles has now donated the equivalent of 55 million meals to people in need since partnering with SecondBite in 2011.