Foodbank Member Charity – Authentic Church’s Community Care provides vital support for Queenslanders in need.
If you found yourself in a position needing to choose between paying a bill or buying food, what would you do? Where would you turn?
Thankfully, Foodbank Member Charities, like Authentic Church’s Community Care, are here to help Queenslanders in need in the Logan region.
For the last four years, Melanie, Director of Community Care has put her heart and soul into the running of the Authentic Community Care Food Outlet. The Food Outlet provides low-cost and no-cost groceries and other essentials. These groceries are collected from the Foodbank Queensland Distribution Centre and other food rescue organisations.
The first three months of food hampers are free for those struggling to make ends meet. After this time, they are available for $25. They also offer a 10% discount on all low-cost groceries for the first six months. This program was created to help people end the cycle of disadvantage, as Melanie explained,
“The idea is it’s a hand-up, not a handout… We want people to keep their humility. While we can give out all the hampers that we want, we’re not actually breaking the cycle of helping people… Let’s get you on your feet.”
The Food Outlet is more than the physical items offered, it offers the intangible benefit of community, hope, and connection. Melanie’s genuine care for helping those in need doesn’t go unnoticed by users of the program.
“I’ll never ever forget a man turned up and it was just before Christmas and he said, “I’ve lost my job, we’ve got no money, we’re trying to get Centrelink”. So, we loaded their boot up, and this grown man just began to cry.”
Knowing the impact Melanie and her incredible team of 20 volunteers are making daily is a driving force behind Community Care. This connection and community offering is also available through the onsite café. The café operates as a space for community members to connect over a coffee and a bite to eat. As Melanie explained,
“Our cafe means there’s always someone you can have a conversation with. It is a connection to the community. We’re really big on community. That’s the heart and soul behind our cafe.”
Any funds made from the low-cost groceries, the op shop, and the café are all put back into the community. Melanie explained that a local student had recently been accepted to play Rugby down in Sydney, while her mother could pay for her flights, she was unable to afford her own. This is where Authentic Community Care chipped in to assist this local family. Under the umbrella of Community Care, the op shop also operates to support local families and individuals.
“There are agencies that reach out to us, and they’ll have a family that’s just gone into care and grandma’s just taken on the kids and they haven’t got clothes, they’ve come with nothing. And I’m like, “Yep, we can do two sets of clothes for everybody just to get them safe and started.” We don’t charge for that.”
So, if you were to ever find yourself in the position of needing assistance, it’s comforting to know that Foodbank Member Charities like Authentic Community Care exist. They exist not only for those who find themselves in desperate need but for anyone, “I don’t care if you’re driving a Mercedes. Looks are deceiving, so many people that have those cars are actually struggling to make ends meet” – Melanie.
With the rising cost of living and interest rate increases, many are just one bill away from skipping a meal or going an entire day without eating. But you can help. If you are in a position to help Foodbank Queensland provide more food across the state to support Queenslanders in need, please consider joining the fight against hunger as a regular giver.
If you are a Queensland charity, Foodbank Queensland membership is a great way to support your food relief projects, offering your organisation a reliable source of food and groceries all year round.