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Parents struggling to afford the basics often are faced with the tough choices when there is not enough food for the all the family. This year, thousands of Western Australian families are facing Christmas in poverty.

Vinnies 2019 Christmas Appeal runs from 1 November until the end of January 2020 and this year Vinnies is asking the WA community to help support people experiencing disadvantage by donating what they can.

A report produced by the WA Council of Social Services in September 2018 stated that families on a low income face a range of food stressors, both economic and other factors such as illness, housing and fuel costs. These factors affect people’s mental, social, emotional and spiritual wellbeing.

When a household looks to be running out of food, many parents will put their child’s needs first while going hungry or eating poorly themselves. But it is hard to shield a child from the impact of the intense stress parents can experience, worrying about where the next meal may come from.

As food plays such an important role in our social lives, the experience of food insecurity can be incredibly isolating. A family that cannot afford enough food to eat may be too ashamed to invite the neighbours in for tea, or ask friends round to play.  Rather than being an occasion to look forward to, important events such as Christmas – for so many of us a time of indulgence – can serve to exacerbate the stress of not being able to make ends meet.

In WA we assist and give vital support to over 50,000 people each year and work directly with people experiencing poverty providing emergency relief support. As part of our Christmas Appeal efforts, you can help a family celebrate Christmas and put food on the table.

You can supporting the 2019 Vinnies Christmas Appeal by making an online donation.