UWA Student Guild offers free food for students in financial hardship

UWA Guild welfare officer Tyson McEwan. Picture: UWA
UWA Guild welfare officer Tyson McEwan. Picture: UWA

UWA is offering help to students who are struggling to make ends meet.

It launched a student Food Party last year that aims to provide basic short-term food relief for students experiencing food insecurity and financial hardship.

It provides non-perishable essential food items such as rice, dried fruit, pasta, UHT milk, cereal, soup, chickpeas and tuna.

UWA Guild welfare officer Tyson McEwan said students could access the confidential service by showing their student card at Student Assist or the Guild Student Centre.

“I meet students every day that are struggling to afford the basics, so I hope this initiative helps fill this gap and makes a tangible difference to these students’ lives,” Mr McEwan said.

Over the past year, an average of 50 students used the Guild Food Pantry each month, with numbers on the rise as awareness spreads.

The UWA Student Guild also offers free independent counselling, meal vouchers, interest-free loans and free fruit during Welfare Week and Soup & Support events.

Demand for the Guild Food Pantry program continues to outweigh supply and the UWA Student Guild – a registered not for profit organisation – is open to support from local businesses and residents.

A study by Universities Australia in 2013 found two-thirds of full-time university students lived below the poverty line.

It also found that of the 12,000 students questioned, one in five occasionally went without food.

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