The Sapphire Community Pantry opened it’s doors in Bega only two months ago, but its success has allowed the low cost grocery store to go even further this Christmas.
Sapphire Coast Pantry manager Christine Welsh said profits have been invested into Christmas hampers sourced through food recovery service Food Bank.
“We’ve been keeping a close eye on our funds and we’ve managed to keep a bit aside for this,” she said.
“We are donating the Christmas hampers as a thank you on behalf of our nearly 300 members.”
Twenty hampers will be split between the Salvation Army and the Southern Women’s Group to reach people in need in their networks.
Ms Welsh said the support from the wider community made the hampers possible.
“We’ve had individuals donating extra produce from their gardens, which allows us to supply people with fresh, healthy produce,” she said.
“There has also been a huge number of people signing up as members, it’s all happened really quickly for us.”
Ms Welsh and her team of volunteers are looking at ways to grow the Sapphire Community Pantry, by expanding into a bigger space and adding a community tea room for customers to stop for a chat.
“We supply food, but we also want to encourage a sense of community and support alongside that,” she said.
The Sapphire Community Pantry is always looking for more volunteers to keep the store running. It is open to the public on Thursdays between 11am and 2pm.