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‘Donate a Plate’ so no one goes hungry this Christmas

Wayside Chapel is making an urgent plea to all Australians to support people with nowhere to go this holiday season through its “Donate a Plate” campaign amid rising homelessness and food insecurity.

Every plate purchased will go towards feeding visitors a three course Christmas meal with all the trimmings, at Wayside’s Christmas Day Street Party, along with continued support throughout the festive season.

According to the Foodbank Hunger Report 2023 more than 3.7 million households in Australia experienced moderate to severe food insecurity in the last 12 months. Alarmingly, 23 per cent of these households are sometimes skipping meals or going whole days without eating because there’s no money for food.

Wayside Chapel is seeing the cost-of-living crisis firsthand, with an expected 60 per cent increase in visitors in the run up to Christmas.

Pastor and CEO of Wayside Chapel, the Rev. Jon Owen, says: “Wayside Chapel is experiencing a surge of need. As you read and hear about these dreadful statistics, we are on the frontline seeing the people behind the numbers and hearing their complex and often heart-wrenching stories.”

Demand for food at Wayside’s low-cost community cafes – from people who can’t get a hot meal any other way – almost doubled compared to last year, to nearly 1700 meals per week. It has now reached the point where the charity has put per-person food limits on orders, to avoid running out of food before the end of the day.

Mr Owen says, “For the 35,011 people experiencing homelessness in NSW, reducing loneliness and disadvantage is more important at this time of year than ever.”

“Donate a Plate” contributions will go a long way to feed and support a person experiencing homelessness and social isolation this festive season and beyond.

  • $27 will provide one meal for one person
  • $54 will feed a couple
  • $108 will feed a family of four

“We’re truly grateful to everyone who’s contributed this year. But the reality is, we still need more help to reach our goal of $1,100,000 by the 25th of December. It’s essential to ensure that the vulnerable in our community aren’t left alone or hungry during what can be the hardest time of the year,” Mr Owen said.

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