Cover Photo

Bridge Darebin

Darebin Neighbourhood Houses Food Relief Response for COVID


While Reservoir Neighbourhood House and Bridge Darebin can no longer support our community through our weekly food-relief programs, we’ve turned our Preston front hall into a central hub for emergency food relief in Darebin.

Bridge Darebin, Reservoir Neighbourhood House and Rotary in Preston have partnered with:

  • The other four Darebin neighbourhood houses: Jika Jika Community Centre, Span Community House, PRACE and Alphington Community Centre
  • City of Darebin
  • FareShare
  • Feed Appeal
  • Foodbank
  • Lentil as Anything
  • Northcote Bakeshop
  • The Office of Ged Kearney MP
  • Uber

to provide emergency food relief in the form of: 

  • cooked, frozen meals (meat, vegetarian, vegan)
  • hygiene packs
  • non-perishable pantry items
  • bread
  • fresh fruit and vegetables (when available)
  • dairy products (when available)

As at 8 May we distributed:

4,040 FareShare two-person meals
3,300 grocery bags (1,100 deliveries)
2 pallets of fruit and veg
2 pallets of dairy products
400 hygiene packs
and have supported 13 organisations to feed their communities.

Can you help? 
Our food-relief operation has quickly become enormous – our front hall looks like a mini-IGA (with the same gaps in supply) with a production line in the centre – to keep up with the urgent need in our community.

We're quickly running out of space, money, time, resources and food.

Last week we assisted 142 households on our list with 426 grocery bags. This week we have 211 households on the list (633 grocery bags) - that's a 49% increase in just five days.

We're now faced with possibility of having to cap numbers and we don’t want anybody to have to miss out.

We’re hoping to bring on a project coordinator soon, but even then Bridge Darebin and Reservoir Neighbourhood House are investing more than $2,345 worth of paid staff hours, additional staple food purchases, PPE and utilities per week to keep the operation going. Sadly, it appears that this level of support will need to increase over coming weeks and be required for months to come.

The City of Darebin has committed funding to cover our Foodbank runs and truck hire for the next few weeks. But there are many staple items –  like tea and coffee, tinned tomatoes, pasta and pasta sauce, rice, sugar, baby formula, nappies and feminine hygiene products – that we can’t get enough of from Foodbank and are purchasing ourselves. These items change weekly so we need funds to cover the shortfalls as required. It is unclear from one week to the next exactly what items we will need to purchase so cash donations will allow us to have the required flexibility.

Can you help, or do you know someone who can? Bridge Darebin* and Reservoir Neighbourhood House are both registered charities and donations of $2 or more are tax-deductible.

What will your money buy?

$10 – Contribution towards the overall effort

$20 – full hygiene packs for 4 people

$30 – rough sleeper pack – specifically for an individual who cannot access a kitchen

$54 – 100kg of pasta or 75kg of rice to divide between grocery bags

$55 – one week’s groceries for a family of four

$75 – one week’s groceries and bathroom essentials for a family of four

If funds raised exceed the COVID-19 emergency response requirements, additional donations will be channeled into the ongoing food relief that is provided by both organisations during any ‘normal’ week. Outside COVID-19, Reservoir Neighbourhood House provides food relief to between 100-150 people every week, including those in public housing around the centre. Bridge Darebin provides a weekly community lunch to 60-80 people and weekly dinner to 80-100 with the help of 300 Blankets volunteers. These two day-to-day programs cost the services in excess of $27k per year, which is covered by fundraising or by stopping other community programs to fund this work.

Rest assured, every cent will be going into food relief to support our vulnerable community members both inside and outside COVID-19.

* Preston Neighbourhood House Inc. is registered as a charity with the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission ABN 66801857062 (trading as Bridge Darebin)

You can also donate by direct bank transfer. Use ‘foodrelief’ as your payment reference and email with your name, donation amount and date so we can issue you with a tax receipt.


BSB number: 633-000

Account number: 128576022


Help Bridge Darebin to reach their goal of $26,415

$11,407 raised

Contact Details

218 High St

(03) 9484 5806

Are donations tax deductible?


Will I receive a receipt for my donation?

Yes, as soon as your donation is processed.