No different to a grocery store

Rose’s customer story about coming to Foodbank WA

The food budget in households has quickly come to be seen as discretionary spend.

When you have already tried to cut your spending down by buying cheaper cuts of meat or supermarket brand products only and have really gotten as creative as possible with mealtimes and still have no room to move, you realise you are in trouble and need help

At Foodbank WA, our number of customers continues to grow. Demand has almost doubled across the state. Both a new socio-demographic and the traditionally vulnerable are needing our assistance. 

Household bills are all up, gas, electricity, petrol and the list goes on. A recent Finder survey found that the average grocery bill in Perth has gone up from $129 in February 2022 to $179 in February 2023 which is an increase of $50 just for food and groceries. 

Centrelink payments went up earlier this year ranging from $20 a fortnight up to $40 a fortnight depending on the type of benefit an individual is on. Those working may be lucky enough to receive a small pay increase, many won’t. No matter how you look at it, the number of people struggling is rising and shows no signs of slowing down

Like so many Western Australians, Rose found that supermarket costs were crippling her and her partner. She is on Centrelink benefits and finds it hard to live from fortnight to fortnight managing the little money she has. Between keeping a roof over her and her partners’ heads and keeping the electricity on, there are weeks where food becomes a very distant last consideration. 

Recently Rose and her partner received their electricity bill and pooled their money to pay for it leaving them with no food.

Thankfully, Rose’s Dad was able to help with $20 so she could visit her local Mobile Foodbank and do her food shop for the week.

The big smile on Rose’s face shows her gratitude, “This place is a godsend. It really is,

I’m eating better because you get everything you need in the packs,” Rose says of the variety of food on offer. The frozen meals in particular are a favourite because of their ease, good value for money proportionally and the fact that they are full, balanced meals with protein, carbs and vegetables. Overall, she says the Mobile Foodbank has proven to be a lovely experience, and not overwhelming as many people may think.  

You don’t feel any different that you would just going to a grocery store. “There’s nothing strange about it. I don’t feel embarrassed. I feel great. 

Food Assistance is available to anyone struggling to access or afford food. If you or anyone you know if finding it tough to make ends meet, phone the Emergency Relief & Food Assistance Hotline 1800 979 777, Monday to Friday 9.00am – 5.00pm. 

Help is here if you need it