Rollout of food hampers to support international students

The NSW Government has teamed up with Foodbank to supply emergency food hampers what will include groceries and pantry staples, to international students struggling to access supplies during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Two in five charities have seen a rise in the number of international students asking for help in accessing food since the Covid-19 pandemic started, according to the Foodbank Hunger Report 2020,” says NSW Treasury Deputy Secretary Trade and Global NSW Jenny West, adding that funds for the 62,500 food hampers form part of $4.1 million allocated to Foodbank to deliver food security to vulnerable NSW communities.

“International education is a crucial sector for our State and our international students contribute so much to NSW metro and regional communities through volunteering and employment, sharing skills and talent, building research links, and fostering innovation and entrepreneurialism,” says Ms West.

Three in five seek support for food relief

Foodbank expects to see a strong uptake, urging international students to accept help after its report found three in five people don’t seek support for the food relief they need.

“International students were among the first to feel the impact of Covid-19,” says Foodbank NSW & ACT Chief Officer, John Robertson.

“We need to continue to ensure that anyone who is struggling to put a meal on the table knows they can get ongoing support through Foodbank and our distribution partners.”

‘The hampers have been a lifeline’

According to Macquarie University Master of Media and Communication student, Siddhant Acharya, “the hampers have been a lifeline” and a reminder that he isn’t alone despite being thousands of kilometres from home during such a challenging time.

He adds that the hampers have also “benefitted thousands of my peers”.

“I am incredibly grateful for the ongoing support of the NSW Government,” he says.

Students who wish to access a hamper can do so by completing this online form or calling Foodbank NSW & ACT on 02 9756 3099 to find their nearest distribution centre.

For more information about the initiative and accessing a food hamper, visit: study.sydney/student-welfare/food-assistance

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