Murray Bridge SecondBite fundraiser

Help others: Coles State Operations Manager Sophie Wong encourages shoppers to get behind a fundraising campaign this winter. Photo: Supplied.

Help others: Coles State Operations Manager Sophie Wong encourages shoppers to get behind a fundraising campaign this winter. Photo: Supplied.

Murray Bridge residents can help fight the war against hunger this winter by helping to raise funds to deliver meals to people in need.

As part of a five-week fundraising campaign, Coles will collect funds for SecondBite, a national charity which redistributes surplus fresh food to Australians in need.

For every $2 donation card purchased at Coles between July 5 and August 8, SecondBite can provide the equivalent of eight healthy meals to Australians doing it tough.

In the past 12 months, Coles at Murray Bridge has donated more than 1900 kilograms of food to SecondBite to redistribute to the Salvation Army Murray Bridge which uses the donations for its Emergency Relief program, community lunches and free fresh food market.

All donations raised will help people in need across Australia by supporting SecondBite to collect and redistribute surplus fresh food, and provide it completely free of charge wherever it is needed.

The fundraising appeal follows a survey by SecondBite, which found that nearly 70 per cent of community food groups, charities and welfare agencies were experiencing an increase in demand for their services compared to 12 months earlier.

Family breakdown, social isolation and depression are the most widely reported factors contributing to people’s need for food assistance, according to the survey.

SecondBite CEO Jim Mullan said more funding was required to pay for operational costs involved in providing food to the increasing number of people in need.

“Across Australia we now work with around 1300 fantastic community groups to distribute surplus food from Coles to people in need,” he said.

“However, we need funds to pay for our ongoing operating expenses such as fuel, transport and refrigeration so we can deliver this food. By donating to SecondBite, people can help us to reach more people experiencing hardship.”

Coles State Operations Manager Sophie Wong encouraged shoppers to get behind the fundraising campaign this winter.

“Too many people in our community cannot afford nutritious food for themselves and their families. By raising funds for SecondBite, we hope we can help get more meals on the table for people in need,” she said.

SecondBite has partnered with Coles since November 2011 to rescue surplus fresh, nutritious food for people in need.

Funding from last year’s Secondbite Winter Appeal at Coles helped to deliver food more efficiently and cost effectively to community groups. For example, a $2 donation helped to deliver the equivalent of five healthy meals to disadvantaged people last year but now that same amount of money delivers the equivalent of eight meals.