Jamie Oliver’s Ministry of Food cooking volunteers Brian McKay, of Haigslea, Rebecca Warren-Halliday and Allyson Mutch.
Jamie Oliver’s Ministry of Food cooking volunteers Brian McKay, of Haigslea, Rebecca Warren-Halliday and Allyson Mutch. David Nielsen

Chefs cook up dinner for homeless

FLOOD-AFFECTED residents and hard working volunteers are being encouraged to snap up a free nutritious dinner cooked by celebrity chef Jamie Oliver’s Ministry of Food team.

The team will provide the meals for 250 people a night for the next two weeks from their Ministry of Food Centre in d’Arcy Doyle Place.

They were due to start fitting out the site this week ahead of its March opening, but those plans have been changed so the flood food relief program can start straight away.

Oliver said he had been spurred into taking action after seeing shocking flood images and hearing the impact it had on Ipswich.

“It’s only right that the Ministry of Food Centre in Ipswich plays its part in helping the community,” he said in a statement.

“So I hope that providing free freshly cooked meals for those who need them most will go some way to helping the local community and relief workers in the coming days and weeks.”

Funded by The Good Guys and backed by the Ipswich City Council, the food relief program started last night.

Residents and volunteers can drop in throughout the day for a tea or coffee at the centre, and also collect a meal voucher for a dinner to be served between 6pm and 7.30pm daily. A Boystown Counselling service will also run at the centre.

Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale said he was grateful for the action taken by Oliver.

“Jamie Oliver has played a significant role in the health and welfare of our city and it is wonderful that he has come forward, like so many others, to support Ipswich in helping us recover from these devastating floods,” Cr Pisasale said.

The centre’s general manager Alicia Peardon said the Ministry of Food team were keen to help the city after being caught up in the floods here last week.

Anyone interested in volunteering for the program’s second week can ask at the centre.

To grab a meal, collect a voucher from the Ministry of Food Centre between midday and 3pm daily on a first in, first served basis.



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