Food and grocery relief organisation Foodbank Australia has revealed 40% of people accessing services have requested more household cleaning products, followed closely by personal care items.
Foodbank’s Week of Care, starting 16 July, is an important week for the organisation to highlight its valuable non-food donors and the essential products donated. Basic, but necessary, items such as nappies, shampoo and conditioner, washing detergent, oral care, period care items and much more – simple items that fall off the family budget when times are tough.
Foodbank provides food and grocery relief to more than one million Australians every month. In the past nine months, it has seen an average increase of 21% in people seeking food relief, correlating with the cash rate rises each month.
Now in its third year, Foodbank Australia CEO Brianna Casey hopes Week of Care will shine a spotlight on what these non-food products mean, and just how vital they are to the many vulnerable households around the country.
“To the many people we provide relief to, these non-food items are more than just a product on a shelf. Shampoo represents clean, fresh hair so they can be presentable at work, or school. Washing detergent equals clean clothes, period items make it easier to go to school or simply just leave the house, all this helps maintain a sense of dignity when life becomes really tough.
“If we were not able to rely on the generosity of our non-food donors and provide the toothbrushes, nappies, soap and detergent, many of these items would be out of reach for the thousands of Aussies doing it tough every day,” Ms Casey said.
Foodbank has seen an increase in the demand for food and grocery relief due to the cost of living crisis, changing the demographics of who the food relief organisation traditionally has helped.
“We are seeing people with not one, but two jobs, families with mortgages or rents, students, retirees, people from all different walks of life. We want to be able to essentially wrap our arms around these people and help them. We want to make the step of asking for help easy and accessible and we want to normalise that it’s ok to get help.
“We are so grateful for the number of national donors who provide these personal care, household care and other non-food products which are in such high demand.”
Foodbank would like to acknowledge and thank Beiersdorf, Haleon, Henkel, Kenvue Kimberly-Clark, L’Oreal, P&G, PZ Cussons, Reckitt, Unilever, and Sorbent for their ongoing support in supplying non-food products.