July 28, 2016
by Kaitlyn Estens
The brainchild of local business owners, Kim and Celia Canham, the Coonabarabran Food Pantry made its debut on Thursday, 21 July.
Inspired by Food Bank, which has been operating across Australia for more than 20 years, the mother and daughter duo are attempting to provide an alternative for discount groceries in the community.
“The Food Bank has been running for years in Sydney and other regional locations, providing surplus food from large supermarkets, to help those in need,” Celia said.
“We found that by talking with people in our community, there was a desire for a cheaper option when doing the weekly shop.
“Food is a necessity and things are so expensive, so we created Food Pantry as a cost-saving initiative for local people.”
Celia said all members of the community were welcome at the Food Pantry.
“I want to reiterate that we are open to anyone and everyone from all walks of life, from families to singles and grandparents,” she said.
“We would like to try and get Binnaway and Baradine people involved and get hampers out to them too.”
Coonabarabran Food Pantry is a not-for-profit organisation, with food items dispatched by Food Bank and then sold in hampers, starting at $8.
Hampers contain basic grocery supplies - sugar, flour, tinned fruit, vegetables - enough to last a week.
Single items, including toiletries, tea, coffee and cleaning products, are also available to purchase.
In their first day of trade, Celia said more than 30 hampers were sold.
“We’ve also had an overwhelming response from wonderful volunteers and would encourage more to lend a hand,” Celia said.
“It’s really proving to be a good chance for people to help other people and make new friends.
“The program will run on a three-month trial basis to gauge the interest from the community and from volunteers.
“We love helping this beautiful community and this is something we’ve been wanting to do for a while.
“We are passionate about working with the community, to make a united community.”
Coonabarabran Food Pantry runs each Thursday from 10am to 1pm, at the SDA Hall, 74 Cassilis Street, Coonabarabran. Look for the signs.
William King, Mary King, Kim Canham, Cash Britton, Jess Jerrett and Lachlan, Celia Canham and Jack Hawkins with a selection of hampers available from the Coonabarabran Food Pantry.
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