Run a Food Drive for the ASRC Foodbank

When you run a food drive for the ASRC Foodbank, you’ll make a difference to people seeking asylum by providing one of the most basic human rights, food.

Become a Food Security Champion for Refugees

At the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre we run food banks in Footscray and Dandenong that feed more than 1,600 people each fortnight, most are families living with no income, right to work or health care.

Why Run a Food Drive?

Food is one of the most immediate and tangible ways to give someone a hand up. When you donate food, you can:

  • Unite your staff, students, community group or neighbours around a common cause. Stand together with refugees!
  • Be confident your donation goes directly to vulnerable people. More than 80% of the people we support have no income. The ASRC Foodbank is their only pathway to food security and person hygiene items.
  • Raise awareness about hunger in the community and encourage others to take action
  • Make a big impact with minimal expense.

Need help getting started?

How to run a food drive

Learn how to run your own food drive, from how to choose your drop-off location to how to deliver your donations to the ASRC

Foods we need

.Find out what are the top 10 most needed items to make a difference to people seeking asylum

Tips and Resources

Access a number of items and ideas to help you promote your Food Drive

How to Run a Food Drive

Decide on a start and finish date. 
The shorter the time span for your food drive, the easier it will be to keep people engaged.

Choose a drop-off location for the food. If your food drive is at a school, in an office or community centre, choose a drop-off location that is easy to access and highly visible, and provide a large container labelled with the food list. 

If you are holding a drive within your local neighbourhood, a protected front porch in a dog-free front yard can be used as a contactless ‘any time’ donation point.

Once your food drive is finished, please contact us to deliver the food to us. We have limited transport resources, and are generally unable to collect.

What Food Should We Collect?

The food we distribute through our Foodbank is healthy, nutritious and culturally appropriate for our member cohort. To ensure your food donation has maximum impact for people seeking asylum, we have prepared a list of food and household essentials that we need most:

  • Breakfast items – oats, weetbix, cereal
  • Honey – 220g – 375g
  • Vegetable oil – 750ml to 1L
  • Olive oil –  750ml or 1L
  • Canned chickpeas 425 g
  • Canned tomatoes 425 g
  • Canned lentils 425g
  • Canned white beans 425g
  • Canned mixed beans 425g
  • Canned corn 425g
  • Canned peas 425g
  • Canned carrots 425g 
  • Canned mixed vegetables 425g
  • Dried lentils 1kg
  • Dried chickpeas 1kg
  • Dried beans 1kg
  • Peanut butter 425g
  • Jams 425g
  • Tahini 425g
  • Toothbrushes & Toothpaste
  • Toilet paper
  • Soap – bundle of 2
  • Laundry powder – 500g – 1kg
  • Laundry liquid – 500ml  – 1L
  • Dishwashing detergent – 550ml – 1L

Items to avoid:
We cannot accept food that is past its use-by or best-before date, or with damaged or open packaging.

Some foods and hygiene products are not familiar or culturally acceptable to the people we support. We are unable to distribute the following items through our Foodbank:

  • Baked beans and tinned spaghetti
  • Canned or packet soups
  • Highly processed, ready-made meals, i.e. packaged mac and cheese
  • Sweets, soft drinks and chips
  • Sauces and other condiments
  • Tampons

Food Drive Resources

Below you will find a number of helpful resources to run and promote your food drive. If you need any advice, please contact us via email or call (03) 9326 6066 and ask for the Food Donations Coordinator.

Communicate to your participants through social media, newsletters and flyers. Promotion is most effective when it is close to the start date of the food drive. If your food drive runs over several days or weeks, remind your community with social media posts and other prompts throughout the duration. 

Ideas for Success

Make it a competition
A little competition helps raise the stakes. Set a goal for your school or office and have different classes or departments compete to see who collects the most food. Offer an incentive such as a pizza and movies afternoon for the winning team or classroom.

Create a theme
Your food drive can be themed around a season eg Winter Warmers or religious events such as Christmas or Rosh Hashanah. This connection will help keep your food drive relevant, and at the forefront of everyone’s minds.

Build a connection to the cause 
Give donors a fact sheet that includes some background information on people seeking asylum who live in our communities, and the work and purpose of the ASRC. Informing your participants helps to connect them with the cause.

Ready to Run a Food Drive?

Questions? Email or call our Supporter Care team on (03)1300 692 772 and ask for the Food Donations Coordinator.