RACV and Eat Up deliver food relief to families in need

Living Well | RACV | Posted on 09 September 2020

RACV employees volunteer to help deliver food boxes to vulnerable Victorian families.

RACV and community partner Eat Up have delivered more than 1400 emergency food boxes to Victorian schools for students’ families needing support in the COVID-19 crisis.

The food boxes have been delivered by RACV employee volunteers to 76 schools throughout metropolitan and regional Victoria, including Gippsland, Ballarat, Colac and the Mornington and Bellarine peninsulas. Each box contains around 10 kilograms of food such as fresh bread, cereal, fruit and vegetables, pasta and long-life milk.

RACV employee volunteers delivering food boxes to Victorian families in need.

Bairnsdale West Primary School Principal Doug Vickers, whose school received 30 boxes, says the food “will mean that our school’s families can focus on getting back on their feet instead of having to worry about where their next meal will come from”. 

Eat Up Australia is a Victorian-based not-for-profit organisation that makes and delivers thousands of lunches a month to schools around Australia, to support their mission to make sure hungry school kids are fed. It was set up in 2013 by Shepparton’s Lyndon Galea after he read a local newspaper article about children coming to school without anything to eat. 

RACV has supported Eat Up with grants and volunteer sandwich making since 2016, and has now extended a further helping hand to deliver the emergency food boxes. 

“Our commitment to the community is even more important as we respond to the effects of COVID-19,” says RACV chief of staff Louise Steinfort, “and we have been proud to work with Eat Up in ensuring that families are supported with meals.

“The impact the emergency food boxes have had on families throughout Victoria shows how important it is for us all to continue helping those impacted by COVID-19 and needing our support."

Eat Up’s Lyndon Galea says the organisation had shifted its focus from sandwiches and school boxes to emergency food boxes for families in need in response to the COVID-19 crisis. 

“Schools were desperately seeking food relief for students and their families. To meet this requirement, we needed to deliver emergency boxes direct to schools, which was made possible through RACV’s volunteers and vans. 

“The pivot in focus has allowed us to support regional areas, and schools whose students and families have felt the impact of the crisis,” Lyndon says.

RACV has also been supporting Victorians by delivering nutritious meals cooked in its kitchens to community organisations that support vulnerable and marginalised community members affected by COVID-19.

Since it launched in March, the emergency goods assist service has delivered more than 56,000 meals, starting with deliveries around Melbourne and extending to regional Victoria, to increase the reach to other communities impacted by COVID-19 and in some cases last summer’s catastrophic bushfires.

RACV has expanded the service to regional areas including Gippsland, Geelong, the Bellarine Peninsula, Ballarat, Shepparton and the Mornington Peninsula.