Community Food Map tackles food insecurity
A new interactive digital map allowing residents to access the locations of food programs, services, and resources has been launched as part of a City of Melbourne initiative to help tackle food insecurity.
The Community Food Map is the first of its kind to be created online, providing information about community meal programs, food banks, affordable fresh food and groceries, community gardens, and food education within the City of Melbourne and surrounding suburbs.
The council’s latest data shows 28 per cent of residents had experienced food insecurity from 2021-22.
“Everyone in our community has the right to access food that is nutritious, affordable and culturally appropriate to support their health and wellbeing, yet we know that over one in four Melburnians experienced food insecurity last year,” Lord Mayor Sally Capp said.
“While the number of community members reporting food insecurity has decreased in the past 12 months, increasing the availability of food for everyone, especially the most vulnerable, remains our priority.”
“Our Community Food Guide is an important resource for Melburnians who are experiencing food insecurity. It provides the locations of free and low-cost community meals and other resources and services such as food banks, pantries, community gardens and fresh food markets.”
Among the services and programs that the food map points to in North Melbourne and Kensington include the Hotham Mission, St Vincent de Paul Society’s soup van, Kensington Neighbourhood House – McCracken St food share garden, and the Kensington Food Garden.
The Community Food Guide was first developed in 2018 and was updated in 2019 and 2020.
However, the interactive digital map is a new feature of City of Melbourne’s effort to eliminate food insecurity. The map features location tracking and filters so people can find exactly what they’re after.
Hard copies of the food guide are available at community facilities including libraries and neighbourhood house and food relief organisations. •