IGA and Vinnies team up to help feed Melbourne’s hungry

IGA has thrown its support behind Vinnies Victoria to help feed those in need throughout the pandemic.

The retailer is sponsoring one of St Vincent de Paul Society’s soup van services by providing non-perishable groceries such as baked beans, pasta, noodles and tinned goods, to help feed those doing it tough in the inner-city Melbourne suburbs of Fitzroy and Collingwood.

The service provides weekly COVID-19 safe contactless food hamper and parcel deliveries to families and people doing it tough, or who are living in temporary accommodation or sleeping rough. While the partnership will initially run until the end of the year, it’s hoped the two organisations will develop longer-term collaboration.

The hampers will be delivered by 130 of Vinnies’ volunteers to begin with, who will later be joined by IGA volunteers when restrictions ease.

It’s not the first partnership for the pair, who for the past 10 years have joined forces for a national Christmas Appeal to support the disadvantaged or those experiencing homelessness.

Vinnies Victoria Soup Van Manager Sarah Cromie said demand for the service had doubled in some areas, with many in Melbourne experiencing extreme financial hardship and job uncertainty due to the pandemic.

“For thousands of Australians, the Coronavirus crisis means that, for the first time, they’re struggling to get food on the table and thanks to our friends at IGA, we are able to continue to support people and communities in need. In July, the Collingwood and Fitzroy Soup Van served more than 16,500 people with food through hampers or individual meals.”

Victorian IGA retailer Joseph Piedimonte, who owns Piedemonte’s Supa IGA North Fitzroy, says it allowed the business to look after locals and to give back.

“We knew we had to do more given the current situation for many Victorians and are thrilled to extend our relationship with Vinnies and further support people in our local communities who are doing it really tough.”

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