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Au airline gives $30,000 grant to feed hungry school kids

Jetstar today announced Eat Up as the latest recipient of a $30,000 Flying Start grant. The grant will help the Melbourne-based organisation provide food for hungry school kids and assist in raising community awareness of the issue.

Eat Up is responsible for making and delivering over 550,000 lunches to schools around metropolitan Victoria, Queensland, and New South Wales. The organisation says the grant, comprising $15,000 in Jetstar flights and $15,000 cash, will help it expand into rural areas.

Eat Up founder, Lyndon Galea, says missing meals can have a significant impact on a child’s or teenager’s health, development and learning and is more prevalent in Australia than people think.

According to Galea, almost 22% of Australians are food insecure and one in five children turns up to school hungry, which can lead to fatigue, chronic illness, poor learning outcomes, bullying and missed days of school. Eat Up’s mission is to feed these students so they can grow, learn, and succeed.

“Children missing lunch is a national concern and we’ve made it our ambition to have an Australia-wide presence. Jetstar’s Flying Start Program grant is a massive boost in making this possible and we’ll now be able to deliver an additional 115,000 lunches to vulnerable kids in rural areas in the next 12 months, as well as ramp up our existing metropolitan services,” said Galea.

Jetstar’s Head of Group Operations and Flying Start judge, Kate Cotter, said the judging panel was thrilled to support Eat Up and proud that the grant will have a far-reaching community impact.

“It’s incredibly rewarding to know that the Jetstar Flying Start Grant will benefit around 10,000 Australian children,” said Cotter.

The Jetstar flight component will provide travel for Eat Up staff to enrol an additional 370 schools across the country and feed more hungry children and teenagers. The cash component will be used to fit out a delivery van with refrigeration so that fresh lunches can be delivered to over 130 schools.

Starting in the kitchen of Galea’s mother in their hometown of Shepparton, Eat Up has grown rapidly since its inception, expanding from helping 20 schools in 2015 to 526 schools at present, producing over 9,000 sandwiches every school week.

The Jetstar Flying Start Program invites community groups and organisations across Australia to apply for a $30,000 grant to fund a project that will enrich the lives of people in their local community. Eat Up is the nineteenth recipient of a Jetstar Flying Start grant.

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