The Nourish Project is a coordinated and collaborative Neighbourhood House response to food insecurity and food waste in Maribyrnong. The Nourish Project Food Relief Program rescues one tonne of surplus food from landfill per month and transforms this donated food into nutritious meals which are distributed and provided free to people in need around the Maribyrnong and Brimbank area. With the support of so many, the project has already delivered over 8000 meals since its establishment.
In August 2020 five Neighbourhood House’s in Maribyrnong and Brimbank joined forces and launched a pilot project to rescue surplus food, and provide free, nutritious cooked meals for people doing it tough. While addressing food insecurity is the primary outcome for this program, it also provides volunteer opportunities and rescues surplus food from going to waste. The Nourish Project has also provided and delivered over 90 online supermarket food orders to community members who are experiencing negative impacts from the pandemic since December 2021.
YCC project coordinator Bettina Twyman says, “The majority of our clients we see are living week-to-week and they don’t have the financial resources to stock up on basics. Having a warm, nutritious homestyle meal that not only feeds the body but also the soul is something everyone deserves. Our meals can also provide hope to someone doing it tough.”
Nourish meals are prepared weekly in Yarraville Community Centre’s kitchen by qualified chefs and dedicated volunteers. The frozen meals are distributed in partnership by Angliss Neighbourhood House, Duke Street Community House, Braybrook Maidstone Neighbourhood House, West Footscray Neighbourhood House and Yarraville Community Centre.
Without the support of so many local businesses offering surplus food, dry goods and fresh produce, The Nourish Project could not meet the increasing demand for food relief in the local area. The project relies heavily on in-kind food donations to meet the growing need. “We’re calling on the generosity of local businesses and individuals to raise much needed food donations, to ensure those most at need don’t go without,” says Suzanne Mosca, Nourish coordinator.
Find out how to donate or to access meals here