Foodbank opens

MEETING A NEED: Members of Mullumbimby Community Food Box Mary Polidano, Gai Laverty and Gil Lomath prepare for next month’s opening.
MEETING A NEED: Members of Mullumbimby Community Food Box Mary Polidano, Gai Laverty and Gil Lomath prepare for next month’s opening. Veda Dante

A SECOND Foodbank for Byron Shire is set to open at the Mullumbimby Uniting Church after approval was received from the charity's Sydney head office.

Starting next month, concession cardholders will be able to supplement their weekly shopping with items donated from major suppliers and sold from Mullumbimby Community Food Box on Thursday mornings.

Co-ordinator Gill Lomath, who volunteers with the church's monthly soup kitchen, said there was a huge need for the service in the northern end of the shire.

"We want to make it an inviting social day, with people able to enjoy a cup of tea and coffee and a chat when they pick up their groceries," Ms Lomath said.

Sponsored by Mullumbimby Uniting Church and Foodbank NSW, Mullumbimby Community Food Box allows families on welfare and students with concession cards to register to shop for groceries at a fraction of their retail price.

With a loaf of bread costing 60 cents and a two-litre carton of milk priced about $1, the service will help ease the financial burden for those on low incomes.

"Costs simply cover transport and Foodbank service fees," said John Morris, also a co-ordinator.

"We're not interested in putting anyone out of business, but rather helping struggling families."

While members of the community are welcome to donate non-perishables, volunteer "hands and heads" are needed to help unload and unpack stock, service customers and whatever odd job comes up.

"We also need a cash register so would be very grateful if someone out there had a spare one to donate," Mr Morris said.

Mullumbimby Community Food Box will open on Thursdays from 9.30am-noon at the corner of Burringbar and Gordon Sts.

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