With food insecurity an ongoing problem, people on the Gold Coast continue to face hardships from the impact of COVID-19. OzHarvest Gold Coast have been busier than ever, working to meet the increasing demand for food relief throughout the region, all the way to Tweed. The team recently celebrated a huge milestone with the delivery of their nine millionth meal to local charity Hearts of Purple.
OzHarvest Gold Coast Manager, Sally Anderson explained that since starting local operations in 2013, more than 3,000 tonnes of surplus food has been saved from ending up in landfill and redirected to help feed locals in need.
“We are incredibly proud to deliver our nine millionth meal to Hearts of Purple. A charity we’ve been supporting since 2019, delivering nutritious, quality food each week,” said Sally.
“OzHarvest Gold Coast is a small team of staff and volunteers and three yellow vans. We are out and about in the community, every week delivering food to charities, schools and community groups to help those most at risk across the region. There is no doubt 2020 was a year like no other, with a drastic rise in demand for our services – we are now delivering 30,000 meals every week.”
Michelle Beatie, CEO of Hearts of Purple, said, “Without OzHarvest, we wouldn’t be able to feed victims of domestic violence. And it’s not just them – thanks to OzHarvest, we are able to feed families, children with disabilities, single fathers, the elderly… anyone who comes to us in need of support. Our chefs are even able to cook up any extra food, meaning we can give nourishing, hot meals to those in need.”
OzHarvest Gold Coast relies on regular food donations from more than 100 local businesses, including National Food Rescue Partner Woolworths who provide a regular supply of fresh and nutritious food to help support 64 organisations in the region.
Woolworths General Manager of Queensland, Chris Peters said: “As the fresh food people, our passion and respect for food is an essential part of who we are, and what we do. Our commitment to identify and divert surplus fresh food to OzHarvest for local charities like Hearts of Purple, who help feed those in need, is a great example of how a little good everyday can make a big difference.”