Strug­gle to feed needy

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS - SAM SMALLBONE

EACH week up to 15 strug­gling fam­i­lies visit the Port Dou­glas Neigh­bour­hood Cen­tre in need of food, nap­pies or emo­tional as­sis­tance - but now the cen­tre needs your help.

The Port Dou­glas Neigh­bour­hood Cen­tre has had to cut its emer­gency re­lief pro­gram bud­get to ap­prox­i­mately $120 each week to buy non-per­ish­able gro­cery items and their stock is run­ning very low.

Com­mu­nity de­vel­op­ment co­or­di­na­tor Tanya Morris is call­ing for the com­mu­nity’s sup­port to do­nate one non-per­ish­able food item from their gro­ceries to a re­lief box at IGA and Coles.

“It is heart­break­ing to see these fam­i­lies stuck in these sit­u­a­tions and we want to be able to as­sist them but fi­nan­cially we are run­ning low on our emer­gency re­lief stock,” she said.

“An emer­gency re­lief box is now avail­able at the en­trance of IGA and Coles in Port Dou­glas for lo­cals to do­nate non-per­ish­able items.

“There is not much work avail­able in town at the mo­ment and a lot of fam­i­lies with chil­dren are re­ally strug­gling. I think I have seen more fam­i­lies this year than ever be­fore.”

The cen­tre pro­vides bread, rice, meat, canned food, spreads and nap­pies to fam­i­lies who are des­per­ately strug­gling and num­bers are in­creas­ing.

“Due to the on­go­ing is­sue of lack of suf­fi­cient gov­ern­ment fund­ing to the emer­gency re­lief pro­gram, the amount of food vouch­ers to be given out has been re­duced and we no longer of­fer help with over­due rent pay­ments,” Ms Morris said.

Pay­ments to­wards elec­tric­ity ac­counts will also be very lim­ited.

Fam­i­lies in need can seek emer­gency re­lief from the Port Dou­glas Neigh­bour­hood Cen­tre on Mon­days and Thurs­days be­tween 10am and mid­day.

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