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Hub at Darling Avenue will help families doing it tough in Murray Bridge’s south
A new community hub in Murray Bridge's south will offer free or low-cost food and a place for people to connect.
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A new food bank and community hub on the south side of Murray Bridge will offer locals “a place to meet needs, to gather and build friendships”.
Free or low-cost groceries will be available at the Hub at Darling Avenue this Friday morning from 9am to midday, and every week from now on.
Volunteers will also operate a café with free tea, coffee and toasted sandwiches.
The project is the result of a partnership between Foodbank SA and six members of Bridge City Church, which owns the property.
Carolyn Edwards said she and the others just wanted to meet the local community’s needs.
Foodbank SA had originally hoped to open its Murray Bridge food hub in the same neighbourhood, but could not find a suitable building.
Since opening on Adelaide Road in October 2020, it has provided food to more than 120 local families each week.
That was vital, Ms Edwards said; but the west side location was a long way away from some of the people who most needed it, including those who did not have access to a car.
“Driving down Swanport Road to here, seeing people walking with little kids, knowing Foodbank up there is five kilometres from here – it’s a 10-kilometre round trip to get food,” she said.
“Foodbank SA, in their needs analysis, worked out this area is the area of greatest need, but there wasn’t an area big enough for them.
“We saw the need and thought ‘what can we do?’”
They struck a deal with Foodbank to have bread, fruit, vegetables and other food items delivered every week.
The Murray Bridge council chipped in $5000 to pay for a fridge, freezer and other equipment.
Finally, a couple who wished to remain anonymous covered the cost of a shipping container which will be used as a food store.
The church will support the venture until it becomes financially sustainable.
Ms Edwards said she and her husband Andrew had been inspired by Food for Life, a similar partnership between Foodbank and Baptist Care in the Northern Territory.
The group went back up north last November to have a chat with the program’s leaders and find out how they did it.
The Hub at Darling Avenue will host a range of community programs in future, too, starting with Circle of Security – a program which strengthens the bonds between parents and young children – next Friday.
“Whatever the community identifies that (locals) might need, we’ll try to meet that need as best we can” Mr Edwards said.
Get help: Visit the Hub at 63 Darling Avenue, Murray Bridge between 9am and 12pm every Friday.
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