Church gives all fare go

PARISH­IONERS’ KIND­NESS PUTS FOOD IN PARK

Mt Druitt - St Mary's Standard (East) - - NEWS - Jenny Gal­braith

HID­DEN among the busy shop­pers walk­ing down the main street of St Marys are peo­ple wor­ry­ing about where they will find their next meal.

But for the past two years a lo­cal church has helped put th­ese wor­ries aside at least for an af­ter­noon dur­ing their fort­nightly lunches in Coach­mans Park.

The meal has trans­formed the park into a hub where the com­mu­nity can meet to­gether and get to know each other, as well as shar­ing food.

Jay Alviz from the Je­sus is Lord Church said the strug­gles faced by many in the com­mu­nity were con­fronting.

“You nor­mally pass peo­ple by and don’t think about it, but when they tell their story you get shocked about what they’ve been through,” he said.

As well as shar­ing a meal in the park the church, in part­ner­ship with Christ Mis­sion Pos­si­ble, hands out ham­pers with gro­ceries to help peo­ple fill their pantries with ce­real and canned food.

“A lot are strug­gling so ev­ery fort­night it helps them out with their bud­get when they go to put food on the ta­ble,” Mr Alviz said.

“It be­comes a meet­ing point for them and some of them bring their fam­ily as well.”

The church meets at the Fu­sion youth ser­vices hall on Sun­days, but is ne­go­tiat- ing with Pen­rith Coun­cil to move to premises in Queen St.

“The place used to be a methadone clinic, so it would be great to turn it into some­thing Alviz said.

The church is also in­volved in other pro­grams such as vis­it­ing the fam­i­lies who have a par­ent in jail.

The next lunch in Coach­mans Park will be this Sun­day from noon.

pos­i­tive,” Mr

Pic­ture: PETER KELLY

Jay Alviz (se­cond from right) and fel­low mem­bers of his church serve meals in Coach­mans Park.

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