Steven Purcell at the newly opened Goodna Street Life Food Relief Shop.
Steven Purcell at the newly opened Goodna Street Life Food Relief Shop.

The charity helping vulnerable residents stock up

AN Ipswich charity has established its own food relief store in a bid to help struggling residents stock their pantry amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Goodna Street Life usually operates an Op Shop, but made the decision to close the store to keep staff safe during the outbreak.

In the meantime, they're doing what they can to help the community's most vulnerable.

GSL Vice President Steven Purcell said while there are other places for people to access discounted food, they weren't always easily accessible to local residents.

"We've been able to put together a food relief shop at a time were a lot of people are really needing something locally," he said.

"We also supply food to service providers that have clients who are unable to leave their house to go and get food.

"We will soon be setting up a delivery service and we'll be able to actually deliver food ourselves to people who are self-isolating."

Mr Purcell said the shop had already provided much needed food relief for those struggling the most.

"There's been a lot of supports that have been put in place for certain people, but there's still a lot of vulnerable people out there that are really struggling at this time.

"The really cheap meals are one thing we get, particularly with pensioners, we have frozen meals for $2 which means someone can get a week's worth of meals for $14.

"We have some clients that are New Zealand residents who have children, they don't receive any of the extra payments … they can come in and feed a family of five or six on very limited amount of money."

While the Op Shop is close, there are plans to still sell some of its stock as we head into the cooler months.

"We do still have an enormous amount of stock and it is coming into winter, we are actually adding in a smaller version of our Op Shop here, attached to the Food Relief Shop, so all of our existing stock we have, we're able to put and sell off to people now," Mr Purcell said.

The Food Relief Shop can be found in the old Weeroona Hotel, which is best accessed off Mill Street with parking out the back.

For more information, visit the Goodna Street Life Facebook page.

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