Sunday Blessings Auckland
Working together to help our friends in need since 2018, Sunday Blessings has coordinated over 52,000 meals for our un-housed community through food rescue, donations and love from our kitchens. We also actively campaign for law and policy reform for legislation to make the dumping of edible food illegal, read more about this under 'Our Petition'.
Hi, welcome! Thank you for wanting to know more about us. This webpage was created in 2019 and is now maintained by a Auckland University of Technology Faculty of Business, Economics and Law student.
Sunday Blessings Auckland is a grass-roots community group, utilising community surplus food and volunteers to feed up to 170 guests each Sunday evening at The Ellen Melville Centre, 2 Freyberg place, Auckland Central.
We operate next to our partners Orange Sky New Zealand, who offer free washing and showering services, as well as invite groups like Koha Apparel (clothing service) and more to join us when they can.
In the beginning, we learned there were no 7 day a week evening meal services in Auckland, we refused to sit back and watch people in our city centre be forced to search through the rubbish bin for food. Especially when we saw how much food waste existed in Tāmaki Makaurau and the imbalance was so obvious.
Our goal was then to work with and around other community groups we knew were out there to ensure there were meals being served 7 days a week in our city. We created an AUT student led service on Tuesday's and our regular service on Sunday's to help reach this goal. We have now been able to reduce our service to Sunday only as other community groups have joined the kaupapa of ensuring none of our street whanau are without full bellies at night time.
Please see 'Our Story' for a more detailed narrative of how we have evolved from 2018.
Our core values:
1. Collective responsibility - The founders of Sunday Blessings believe that harm to our community harms us all. Conversely uplifting our most disadvantaged and vulnerable members of our community impacts all of society positively, therefore a collective responsibility exists in addressing the social issue of food insecurity.
2. Accessibility to food is a human right - We believe in a country such as Aotearoa, NZ where there is so much harmful food waste, accessibility to food is a fundamental human right. That all members of society must benefit from this right particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds. Alleviating the social issue of food insecurity for anyone living in poverty, particularly our un-homed community is important to us because of this belief. This right is also grounded in obligations created by International Human Rights Law and Tiriti o Waitangi.
3. Sustainability - Reduction of food waste and harmful gases by utilising excess food from local retailers and organised events that would otherwise go to waste. Encouraging order within a grass roots organisation and more communication with other community groups to avoid cross over and waste. These efforts to balance heart driven community work with social enterprise business acumen makes our services more sustainable.
4. Peace - We aim to both peacefully bring together people from all living situations, ages, classes, ethnicities and more through the blessing of food, as well as encourage a more peaceful community overall. A person who would otherwise be hungry at night is happier with a stomach full of warm nutritious food received from a space of mutual respect without barriers that include paperwork which is often overwhelming to our streeties. A kind hearted volunteer also has more peace and happiness when purposed with helping their community.
Through attending a meal as guest or working with Sunday Blessings as volunteer, one is attributing to a more peaceful Auckland community that we all belong to as one.
If you don't believe us just come down and see the happiness at our meals or ask a Glendowie primary school student what they get out of baking for our guests safely from their homes.
Not only do we have primary aged students regularly working with us from home, we have adult community members of all ages, as well as an army of AUT Sunday Blessings students working constantly from back office administration to cooking, to volunteering their time outside of their studies to work front line.
Sunday Blessings truly is by the community, for the community, with a less talk and more do attitude working together sensibly to use what we have to make social impact.
Please follow us on social media and watch our stories to stay up to date with what we have on offer outside of our Sunday & ad hoc meals and get to know our volunteers and guests through our regular updates.