A Christmas Carol raises money for Foodbank

A Christmas Carol raises money for Foodbank
Kaylah Joelle Baker

The Comedy Theatre's festive production of A Christmas Carol has not only been spreading Christmas cheer to audience members, but also to people in need of food relief thanks to a partnership with Foodbank.

The Melbourne-based charity is Victoria’s largest and longest-standing food relief charity, and the previous years have only continued to amplify its importance.

“We’ve been feeding Victorians in need for more than 90 years, but the last few have forever changed the way we do things,” CEO of Foodbank Dave McNamara said.

“Our organisation has never worked harder, faster or gone further to get food on the tables of vulnerable people.”

Currently Foodbank is feeding 100,000 people every two days through its charities, schools, mobile supermarket buses, and “Farms to Families” regional markets.

But even with the extra facilities it is still seeming to not be enough, Mr McNamara said “the cost-of-living crisis and now the floods [which] have devastated entire communities in regional Victoria” had only made Foodbank’s job harder.

This concern around families struggling during the festive season has reflected strongly within the production of A Christmas Carol.

While the production follows the main character of Ebenezer Scrooge, played by David Wenham, it doesn’t shy away from delving into the townspeople’s grapple with not having enough food to provide for their families.

In addition to the strong message of hope and giving seen onstage, the cast and crew of the award-winning production have been asking audience members to help support Foodbank through bucket collections and online donations at the end of every performance.

“We’re a community organisation, and we’re always grateful when a community like the cast, crew and audiences involved with A Christmas Carol gets behind us to help out,” Mr McNamara said.

“We couldn’t do what we do without them.”

While premiering and being performed over the past five years at London’s The Old Vic, UK audiences raised more than one million pounds for food poverty and deprivation-focused charities, and the hope is for this awareness to continue during its time in Melbourne.

Speaking on the decision to promote Foodbank and the need for donations, GWB Entertainment Australian producers said, “live theatre is a shared experience and a unique exchange between the performing company and the audience”.

“To celebrate this experience and the spirit of Christmas, audiences at every performance of A Christmas Carol will be encouraged to contribute what they can to assist Foodbank in doing the incredible work that they do.”

The smash hit production will continue to show in Melbourne until December 29.


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