Moorabbin Airport Corporation and FareShare, Victoria’s largest charity kitchen, team up to deliver 1 million meals
Feeding Victoria’s hungry just got a little easier – and healthier – with up to 12 tonnes of vegetables to be grown annually at Moorabbin Airport.
Work commenced this week on the 3,000 square-metre plot of airport land which will become one of metropolitan Melbourne’s largest charity vegetable gardens.
Dozens of volunteers will construct scores of raised garden beds to grow a diverse range of vegetables including pumpkin, broccoli, cauliflower and capsicum.
The kitchen garden site will be managed by Moorabbin Airport and FareShare. The airport’s owners, Goodman, and a cohort of corporate donors that are offering their time, resources and funds will build the garden.
The much-needed vegetables will go towards the 25,000 meals FareShare cooks weekly from its Abbotsford kitchen. Every year FareShare distributes more than one million free meals to charities across the State.
The Chief Executive of the Moorabbin Airport Corporation, Paul Ferguson, said the idea came about from discussion with the Goodman Foundation and FareShare who have been recipients of workplace giving donations and volunteering efforts by Moorabbin Airport and Goodman employees for several years.
“FareShare needed more land in metropolitan Melbourne. As a metropolitan airport, with a shareholder who knows how to unlock value in land, Goodman quickly recognised the kitchen garden as an important cause and a good opportunity to make a real difference for many Victorians”, Mr Ferguson said.
Moorabbin Airport is committed to the success of the kitchen garden and has gifted the land to FareShare for 33 years until 2048. The land donation from Moorabbin Airport is equivalent to a $100,000 annual donation.
FareShare CEO Marcus Godinho said the donation of the land and an established kitchen garden in metropolitan Melbourne would benefit thousands of people.
“One of the biggest challenges we, as FareShare face, is sourcing a constant and diverse supply of fresh vegetables. Being able to plant and harvest our own will ensure our 750 regular volunteers have the necessary ingredients to cook nutritious meals for Victorians in need.
“Every week we receive requests for more food from charities. The only thing holding us back is ingredients. The FareShare Kitchen Garden at Moorabbin Airport will help us expand production to meet growing community need and enable us to cook more than 1.15 million meals this year.”
FareShare runs Australia’s largest charity kitchen to rescue food and cook quality meals for more than 400 charities across the state who support those who are hungry, homeless or doing it tough. Recipient charities include a number of local organisations such as Avo Care, Moira Southern Direction Youth Services, and Matt’s Place.