Read first-hand what a positive difference SecondBite has made.
Here is our proud list of testimonials from some of our clients.
Hi my name is Jason. I’m the chef at Moonyah Recovery Services. We deal with alcohol and drug addictions. Our facility hosts up to 110 participants which is a lot of bellies to feed, but now we’re in the process of expanding a new 24 bed extension to our rehab which cost a substantial amount. This is where SecondBite has been wonderful to our business. We use all of the SecondBite products to feed into our menu… sometimes I am saving up to $1000 dollars a week, which helps us to start getting new equipment to our new dorms e.g. microwaves, kettles, toasters, even looking at a new deep freeze. I am so grateful to SecondBite. Approx. 30% of our clients come from living off the street, 20% come from jails or institutions, so it's a bonus with such a tight budget when I get the SecondBite food. There is a variety that I can teach our clients to cook as well to look after themselves because you can imagine most of our clients come in well under weight and malnutrition, sometimes to a point where they’re facing death if we don't help them within days. So thank you so much for the support you give us. It's a real encouragement to our clients on our program. – Jason, Moonyah Recovery Services
Like a lot of people I’d spoken to before my day out, I didn’t know a great deal about SecondBite, the agencies they support and the desperate need that a lot of people have for fresh food or a decent meal. It didn’t take long to learn a lot about all of these things. From the moment I arrived at the SecondBite offices, it was apparent that the success of an organisation like this is largely due to the people involved – passionate, caring and hard-working people who are focussed on making a difference in the lives of others. Such care was taken to ensure the deliveries contained the highest quality food available, with a variety of produce in each delivery allowing the agencies to be creative in the meals they provide. It’s not just about satisfying a basic need, but helping to show people that they deserve better.
The agencies that we delivered to could not be more gracious of the food that was provided, nor more needing. The common theme from all three was “We’ll take as much as you can give”. We were told how last week’s delivery was all gone by the end of the first day such was the demand, and how much of a difference we were making to so many people’s lives. Hearing stories of a Christmas day lunch consisting of a tin of baked beans for some families, or the excitement of having cherries for the first time in “forever” was a very humbling experience. I couldn’t help but smile when one lady announced that Chinese was on the menu tonight thanks to some fresh bok choy and herbs!
The highlight of the day was almost the lowlight had it not been for the contribution and commitment of some very special Coles managers. We had to leave one agency with a smaller than expected delivery and while completely appreciative of what we had provided, it was clear that the need of so many weighed heavy on their minds. Our next Coles pickup was over a dozen crates of amazing produce that had been carefully put aside and was ready and waiting to be picked up by SecondBite. It was straight back to the previous agency and as we unloaded crate after crate of extra food, there was not much any of us could do to hold back the tears.
I had known that Coles was working closely with SecondBite to provide the fresh produce that goes into making the many thousands of meals, but I now have a greater appreciation for the significance of that role. It’s through the commitment of many different people in the organisation that ensures there is food available to be picked up each day from Coles stores, food that rather than going to waste, is making a huge difference to many people. I’m excited to hear about the growing support from Coles of the SecondBite program and very much appreciate the opportunity to be a part of the program.
Finally, I want to once again mention the people of SecondBite and what a great job you do, from Andy spending the day driving me around and talking me through the challenges faced by SecondBite, the agencies and the people in need, to Mark, Dale and the entire team in the office that make this all possible. Your thanks for spending a few hours helping was very much appreciated, but it is all of you that deserve the thanks and praise for what you do day after day, and for your drive to help people in need.
Thank you once again,
Joseph Pouliotis, Coles Team Member
Dear all at SecondBite,
Thank you for your help in making many people happy.
Being able to give out ham, turkey, puddings and fresh fruit and veg was truly magic and the true spirit of Christmas shone through.
In the two weeks before Christmas, we had a sudden surge of new people needing support and it was special being able to give them food. Individual folk who were finding it tough.
Then a man contacted us and brought his father to our home. He was the owner of a small business which had to close earlier in the year and all their employees were mature-aged. He was heart-broken - same old story - no help from Centrelink - need to wait months, sell the equipment etc. We gave him some food and offered to help him deal with Centrelink. Then, with tears in his eyes, he told us about his employees. Not one has been able to get work or help from Centrelink. So we've been able to help them as well.
And having our contact on your website was wonderful. Our phone ran hot for days. Heaps of cafes and shops and companies donated food. Most were happy to deliver it to our home but for those who couldn't deliver I had a system.
If the food offered was in an area too far away, we checked our database and if we didn't have members there, I called all the churches. Most were shut but I found a home for heaps of party pies and other Christmas fare and our Volunteers collected food and rehomed it to a Mission etc.
A few quotes from our recipients.
"Christmas will be more enjoyable than I thought it would be."
"Thank you for the ham. I never bought one this year because I couldn't afford it."
"It's nice to know someone cares."
"I'm speechless." (this was followed by tears and hugs)
"This will make Christmas bearable. Thank you."
Then, late on Christmas Eve the rang yet again. When I answered there was silence then a man said "Oh, you're real. I thought I'd get a machine." I laughed. He owned a food store and business had been slower than previous years so he had fruit, veg and dairy left.
And it was all organic!
He, too, had found our details on your website. Said he'd called churches and charities in his area but just kept getting answering machines. When he saw that we had a mobile he decide to call. He even delivered - about 20 boxes!
Our Christmas meal was even better than we planned and on Christmas day Howard and I took the rest to the local church so newly arrived families got to take home goodies.
You surely are Angels. The chain of love went from SecondBite all over Melbourne, via West Footscray.
I am indeed blessed to have met you all.
Marilyn King, President, W.O.W! - Willing Older Workers Incorporated
SecondBite allows us to offer more food to our client base through our small mini mart. The focus of the SecondBite program is on fruit and vegetables which is critical for Mission House so that we can offer our clients a variety of foods to help cope with the increasing financial pressures that they are facing. This program helps to offer nutritious food for all.
lan Wallbridge, Anglicare Victoria
Thanks to SecondBite, the LiveWires Programs have been able to provide healthy, exciting and nutritious snack and evening meals for the Primary School-aged children who access our programs. We also give food away to those families who need it and other left-over fruit and veggies get distributed to some elderly people on the Collingwood Public Housing Estate who are unable to leave their homes very often. Good food makes people smile. When we evaluate the LiveWires After Hours Care Program and ask the children what they like best, more often than not they will say "THE FOOD!".
Annn Van Leerdam, Concern Australia
Before SecondBite I had to travel by bus and train with a shopping jeep to carry everything back to Kensington from supermarkets and markets. This exercise would take all week. We have a grant and money was very tight; also I was wearing out. I'm 70, and then to cook everything was just too much, THEN we discovered SecondBite on our door step and things improved big time!
Robyn Edgar, Urban Communities
Jill Murphy, The Big Issue
I met up with SecondBite late 2008 with Frank Costa, Andrew Ballam, Ian Cover, Katie and myself. After 16 years of battling along, I was concerned we might not be able to continue. Initially, I travelled to Kensington and filled the car up. Then later, SecondBite came to Geelong. Last year we celebrated that we have provided half-a-million meals to people in need in Geelong.
Quite simply, without SecondBite we may not still be in existence. Our clients now receive fresh veggies with their meals not frozen and/or processed stuff.
Without the assistance of SecondBite’s Community Connect program, Ballarat Community Health APROTCH would not have the opportunity to provide free cooking programs which allow us to educate clients (who have a diagnosis of serious mental illness) on nutrition, budgeting and increase their confidence in preparing meals in their own home. Also we will not be able to provide our clients with fresh fruit and vegetables on a weekly basis.
Vivian Pasani, Ballarat Community Heatlh
SecondBite has had a huge impact at Abbeyfield House. We are able to get things we wouldn't have had. We've bought a cryovac machine - it helps us process the surplus carrots and tomatoes. Now we are preserving fruits and veggies as well. We bought two big freezers. All of this is because of the money we've been able to save due to the SecondBite service. It’s because of you! The thing I really love about this preserving and processing is that it brings the people together, we actually process and cook all the surplus fresh food together and we get a sense of community - it's invaluable.
Thursdays at the Adventure Playground have become lovingly referred to by the children as "SecondBite Day". They are always excited after school because they know there will always be something for snacks that they ordinarily would not have. The parents are also incredibly grateful that they are able to pop in and take home whatever surplus stock there may be to get them through the week.
Megan Gunn, Geilston Bay High School
Many of our young people run out of money to buy food just a week after they receive income support. One young person, who we'll call Britanny, attended our training programs regularly and her enthusiasm to attend and excel in our programs was incredible. On many occasions she was reduced to tears as she was unable to pay her bills and buy food. We were able to use SecondBite's goods to send food parcels home with her whenever she needed help. She even passed items on to her little brother who was also in need of assistance.
Kate Conforti, TOOL
M is a wage earner with 2 children. M's wife and oldest child both require constant medical treatment, the child having to travel interstate for treatment. The family is under severe financial stress and a good and balanced nutritional diet is an important factor in assisting the family to maintain a best standard of health. Despite being employed the financial situation of the family has made it impossible to buy any more than the very basics in food. The provision of SecondBite has allowed the family access to a balanced and nutritional diet to help maintain optimal health levels for the family as they resolve their financial crisis.
Janice Goss, Salvation Army Doorways Clarence