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Shepparton FoodShare set for new home with $600k grant

On-site: Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce and Federal Member for Nicholls Damian Drum announced funding for Shepparton FoodShare. Photo by Rodney Braithwaite

The Federal Government has pledged $600,000 to go towards a new building for Shepparton FoodShare.

Deputy Prime Minister and Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Minister Barnaby Joyce visited Mooroopna on Thursday to announce the funds.

“Ensuring FoodShare has a facility to operate out of in the future is the least we can do for a service that does so much for so many across this region,” he said.

“A huge thank you to these people (at FoodShare).”

All smiles: FoodShare volunteers with Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce (second from right), Federal Member for Nicholls Damian Drum (far right), Nationals candidate Sam Birrell (far left) and Liberals candidate Stephen Brooks (third from right). Photo by Rodney Braithwaite

Shepparton FoodShare has been delivering fresh food to Goulburn Valley residents in need since 2012.

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to a 70 per cent increase in demand for the service, with more than 380 tonnes of food delivered as more people have had to isolate.

Federal Member for Nicholls Damian Drum, who was also present in Mooroopna, said the funds were much needed and well deserved after this challenging period.

“FoodShare came to the fore doing what they do every other week, rising to another level and effectively feeding a third of our city with the generous help of a range of volunteers,” he said.

“I’m proud that the Federal Government is supporting such a worthwhile organisation and I congratulate FoodShare for all the work its volunteers do for the community.”

Shepparton FoodShare deputy chair Jim O’Connor was delighted with the announcement.

“For the past nine years, FoodShare has operated from accommodation provided based on extreme generosity, however never with a formal tenure agreement,” he said.

“Without appropriate and secure accommodation, FoodShare simply would not be able to continue to provide food to the most vulnerable in our community across the Goulburn Valley.”