Free campus breakfasts happen on every campus. Check the Campus Life webpage for dates and locations. Check for upcoming events on all campuses for a free breakfast between 8.30-10.30 am.
Some campuses also offer free dinners and grocery bags to take home. The next event like this is on Thursday 24 May, at the Hawkesbury campus. Run by the campus Bible study group, it goes from 6.30pm to 7.30pm.
Also a free dinner every Wednesday at Campbelltown campus (Multifaith Centre, building 2) from 5:30pm.
Amy Basman from Glenmore Park is a volunteer with Mamma Lana’s Community Foundation https://mamalanas.org.au/ It is a not-for-profit local charity. Meals are served for free for those in need at Judges Car Park Penrith, Monday – Saturday from 8pm. There are also take away items including fresh fruit and vegetables, bakery items and sandwiches.
Some toiletries are available on request, including sanitary pads, tampons, deodorants, soap, toothpaste etc. On Monday nights Mamma Lana’s also offers a free clothing stall and a footpath library. “Mamma Lana’s is about kindness with no strings, no judgements and no questions,” says Amy.
Other assistance points are provided by The Staples Bag. Locations include Campbelltown, Blacktown, Parramatta, Kingswood and Mount Druitt. Lower Blue Mountains and Hawkesbury is supported by assistance from Hawkesbury Helping Hands.
Marilyn Smith, an officer of Penrith’s Salvation Army church says, “Students can call the Salvation Army assistance number on 1300 371 288 for welfare assistance, which includes food. Also for free budgeting advice, [call] Moneycare at the Freedom Centre, phone  4732 4571.”
Many organisations around Western Sydney exist to help you get back on to your feet if you are struggling financially, and will help you out so you can make it through university. Be assured these organisations are there for you so don’t be afraid to call on them for help.
Story by Abigail Nash