Among some of the worst-hit by this pandemic in Melbourne are International students and those on temporary, humanitarian or bridging visa’s.
During some much-needed respite from the usual joyless Covid-19 coverage, I spent some time with two volunteer charity organisations providing and distributing free meals for those who fall through the cracks of government assistance.
The first is @alexmakesmeals, an organisation started by 20-year-old university student @alexkdekker during Melbourne’s first lockdown when the COVID-19 pandemic first hit in March.
Originally aimed at providing meals for healthcare workers, the charity has now expanded to provide meals for anyone in need following the return of lockdown restrictions due to a spike in community coronavirus transmissions. A team of volunteer chef’s and kitchen staff (most out of work) cook and pack hundreds of nutritious culturally appropriate meals a day.
The second group was the Kasih Project is a community organisation that has been distributing emergency food relief.
Angelina Sukiri project co-Ordinator of the Kasih Project has been assisting in the distribution of food to those on Humanitarian Visa’s illegible for government assistance, often working very low-paying jobs in the farming, warehouse or cleaning sector.
With work hours drastically reduced and some without work due to Covid-19, many have had to resort to initiatives such as The Kasih Project, which is a community organisation that has been distributing emergency food relief for international students and other temporary visa holders who are not able to access any government assistance.
If you wish to donate to either organisation you can do so via their links
An estimated 10,000+ #BlackLivesMatters protestors took the street today in #Melbourne in an effort to bring further attention to the Indigenous deaths in custody, Racial profiling and the murder of George Floyd.
Australia has had 432 Indigenous deaths in police custody since 1991.
Events across Australia have been organised in solidarity with protests in the United States following the killing of an unarmed black man George Floyd at the hands of a police officer in Minneapolis, Minnesota and to rally against aboriginal deaths in custody in Australia.
The City of Melbourne is distributing retail vouchers to support international students impacted by COVID-19 and boost trade at Queen Victoria Market as part of its ‘Our Shout’ program. The $200,000 retail voucher program aims to support international students affected by job losses and housing insecurity with access to vouchers worth up to $200 each to spend at Queen Victoria Market. Lines extended around the block. The international student economy is worth $9.1 billion a year to the state of Victoria.