The thought of making 100 hot meals a night might be exhausting for some, but Lana and Roger Borg of Mama Lana’s Community Foundation (MLCF) couldn’t imagine spending their nights any other way.
Their dedication has been recognised by State Penrith MP Stuart Ayres who presented MLCF with a grant of $20,130 through the NSW Government’s Community Building Partnership program on Tuesday morning.
The grant will allow for the construction and installation of a combined freezer and cool room to offer an increased capacity for food storage.
“It’s replacing seven freezers and four fridges, hopefully it will reduce the power bill too,” Ms Borg laughed.
“We make 600 meals a week, and that’s just the hot meals. The freezer will enable us to receive more food.
“What doesn’t fit in our freezer, has to go straight out… This will help to reduce waste.”
MLCF is a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to helping homeless and disadvantaged people in the Penrith Community, offering meals six nights a week as well as toiletry packs, clothing, books and blankets.
The organisation has recently begun providing morning tea and lunch packs to disadvantaged students at a local high school, with feedback from staff incredibly positive noticing a change in the attitude of students already.
Mr Ayres said improving the infrastructure of MLCF will ensure even more people can be helped by the well deserving charity.
“It was my pleasure to recommend this project for funding to assist Mama Lana’s with much needed improvements to their food storage system,” Mr Ayres said.
“Just putting a little bit of consistency into a person’s life can make a world of difference.”
Mr Borg said that despite the pair both working full-time, there is always a way to help those less fortunate.
“Everyone deserves to be fed,” he said.
“I work all over Sydney, and if I see someone who looks hungry or homeless, I will feed them.”
Ms Borg thanked Mr Ayres with a warm hug and praised the community for opening their hearts and getting behind the organisation.
“It’s our first community grant, and I’m very happy,” she said.
“It warms the soul, doing what we do.”
Emily Newton is the Weekender’s police and political reporter. Emily is also the Weekender’s Senior Journalist.