The Essentials

We provide ‘The Essentials’ – Community support services for those in need. This includes food, clothing, shelter and other critical services, including Community Pantries and Homelessness Support. We also run an Op Shop called The Best Dressed Store in South.Point Tuggeranong.

We are also providing relief for those affected by the ACT/NSW/VIC bushfires (if you’re currently in the ACT). Find out more about the bushfire support.

Community Pantries: Support for Food and Personal Care

Our Tuggeranong Community Pantry and Gungahlin Community Pantry provide healthy food and personal care items to individuals and families in Canberra who are experiencing hardship. The community food pantries are located in the Tuggeranong Community Centre and Gungahlin Community Centre. They provide support to the vulnerable and disadvantaged community in Canberra and the surrounding ACT region, as well as supports those who may be struggling.

Assistance During COVID-19

Due to the recent food shortages and the difficulties vulnerable members of our community are having to access food and everyday items, we have temporarily changed the way our community pantries offer food to the community.  We are now giving out free food hampers, packaged by the Canberra Relief Network team, to support the community during COVID-19.

We are also continuing to provide our crisis support and emergency relief services to support those who are struggling, particularly during this time of COVID-19. 

Existing clients
Register with us in our community pantry for the Canberra Relief Network hampers and collect your first hamper from either of our two pantries in Tuggeranong or Gungahlin.  You will need to order any future hampers through the Canberra Relief Network by phoning 1800 431 133 (Monday to Friday, 9.30am to 2.30pm) or by visiting their website. 

New Clients
Please register with the Canberra Relief Network and request to have your hamper delivered to either our Tuggeranong or Gungahlin community pantry, ready for you to collect.  Contact the Canberra Relief Network on 1800 431 133 or visit their website. 

Note: The Canberra Relief Network  is a collaboration of community service organisations, supported by the ACT Government, and has been set up in response to the sudden and overwhelming demand for food and non-perishable household essentials items as a result of COVID-19.

ACT Government Assistance

The ACT Government has a website that outlines a range of discounts, rebates and subsidies available to Canberrans, including housing, transport, bills and dental care. To find out more please visit: www.act.gov.au/assistance

Volunteering and Contact ACT Information Guides

Volunteering and Contact ACT also provide a range of information guides that include useful information for people seeking community support.
To find out more please visit: https://vc-act.org.au/info-guides/

Communities@Work pantry

Opening Hours

Monday – Friday, 9:00am – 3:00pm

Tuggeranong Community & Function Centre
245 Cowlishaw Street, Greenway

Gungahlin Community Centre
47 Ernest Cavanagh Street, Gungahlin


Donate Food and Other Essentials to Support Our Pantry

Donate to Communities@Work Community Food Pantry

Communities@Work’s food programs receive no ongoing ACT or Australian Government funding and rely on strong corporate and community support through sponsorships, philanthropic grants, fundraising and donations.

We appreciate and gladly accept donations for food and other essential times for the Community Pantry.

Donations are gratefully accepted at:

  • Tuggeranong Community Centre, 245 Cowlishaw Street, Greenway Mon – Fri 9 am – 4 pm.
  • Gungahlin Community Centre, 47 Ernest Cavanagh Street, Gungahlin Mon-Fri 9 am – 4 pm.

We also accept donations at several other locations around Canberra through our donation collection bins. For more information on these locations, on the items we need and how you can help, visit our Donate Essentials page

Alternatively, you can make a monetary donation directly to Communities@Work which will be used to buy supplies for our Community Pantries, and support the vulnerable and disadvantaged members of our Canberra community.

Click here to explore the different ways you can get involved with Communities@Work and support our local not for profit community services, through a range of options such as fundraising, sponsorship, partnership, donations, sharing of your ideas etc.

Communities@Work_BushfireRelief_Canberra

Support and Relief After Bushfires

From 1 July 2020, Communities@Work will be offering bushfire relief to help support those who were affected by the bushfire crisis. 

If you are currently in the ACT, have been affected by bushfires (ACT, NSW or VIC), and are experiencing hardship, we can help. Help will mean different things to people because we will work with you to explore your situation.

Register for bushfire relief by filling out a Get In Touch Form and a member of our team will contact you to discuss your needs.

Even if you’re unsure of eligibility, don’t hesitate to contact us and we’ll be in touch to discuss your situation.

Communities@Work has recently been allocated funds by the Australian Government to support those who are under financial strain and who live in or relocated to the ACT following the bushfire crisis. 

Watch Ruth Zanker, Director of Communities@Work Social Programs, discuss how to access food and crisis support in Canberra. You can also check out the entire Helping through Hardship series here – for information relevant to anyone who may be struggling.

Crisis Support and Emergency Relief

We are continuing to provide our crisis support and emergency relief services to support those who are struggling, particularly during this time of COVID-19. 

We help people experiencing hardship and with immediate basic needs in times of crisis.  As well as food and clothing, we provide payment for medical scripts (capped), bus tickets, Telstra vouchers, sanitary items, nappies, phone charging, shower packs. We also provide food and other support for people ‘who are sleeping rough’ including showers, as well as information and referrals to other support services in Canberra, depending on the situation of the individual or family seeking help. Our services are inclusive and non-discriminatory.

Our crisis support services are available by appointment, and can be access from 9 am to 3 pm Monday to Friday.

To access Crisis Support please make an appointment by calling 6293 6500 or using the Get In Touch form. 

Sustainable Food Rescue Program

We rescue excess food from licensed food businesses and retail outlets.  Food rescued by Communities@Work is utilised in our Community Pantries and also provided to a broad range of other agencies including domestic violence refuges, disability support services, homeless shelters, mental health support groups, agencies supporting people with drug, alcohol or gambling problems, refugee programs, school breakfast programs, and other programs assisting those who have financial difficulties.

Communities@Work’s food programs receive no ongoing ACT or Australian Government funding and rely on strong corporate and community support through sponsorships, philanthropic grants, fundraising and donations. Click here to find out how you can help.

We can only accept pre-prepared food from registered food businesses. We appreciate and gladly accept non-perishable items in the original packaging, within the use-by date.  Your donations can be dropped off at the Gungahlin or Tuggeranong Community Centres (open between 9 am and 4:30 pm), or at our donation boxes at our Best Dressed Store downstairs near JB HiFi at South.Point Tuggeranong; outside Woolworths at The Calwell Centre and next to the lift at Cooleman Court.

 

Communities@Work food rescue

Best Dressed Store

COVID-19 Update: Our Best Dressed Store is re-opening on the 4th of July, 2020!

Our Best Dressed Store is the Communities@Work Op Shop that is located in South.Point Tuggeranong and sells clothing and accessories to create sustainable and ongoing funding to help vulnerable clients through our Clothing Program and other social programs.  You can find hidden treasures of women’s and men’s high quality, pre-loved, special occasion and work-ready clothes and accessories at the store. Prices start at only $5.

Our store is located on the Ground Floor near JB HiFi and the Reject Shop at South.Point Tuggeranong. 

South.Point
Anketell Street & Reed Street, Greenway, ACT 2900

Best Dressed Store Opening Hours

COVID-19 Update: Our Best Dressed Store is re-opening on the 4th of July, 2020!
Monday and Tuesday: 1 pm – 4 pm 
Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday: 10 am –  4 pm
Saturday  10 am – 4 pm
Sunday CLOSED

Communities@Work Best Dressed Store

Donate Your Second-Hand Clothes, Shoes and Accessories

We would be very grateful to receive donations of good quality, special occasion and work clothes and accessories. Click here to view current needs.

COVID-19 Update: Our clothing collection points are reopening from 4 July 2020.

Best Dressed Store at South.Point Shopping Centre
Anketell Street & Reed Street, Greenway, ACT 2900

Open Monday to Thursday 10am – 4pm, Friday 10am – 7pm and flexible hours between 10am – 4pm  on Saturday

Tuggeranong Community & Function Centre
245 Cowlishaw Street, Greenway

Reception open between 9am and 4:30pm

Gungahlin Community Centre
47 Ernest Cavanagh Street, Gungahlin

Reception open between 9am and 4:30pm

Senator’s Office 
Unit A, Ground Floor, Law Society Building, 11 London Circuit, ACT 2600

The Green Shed (Mugga and Mitchell sheds)

Clothing Program

COVID-19 Update: Our Clothing Program is temporarily suspended. 

For many who are unemployed, on low incomes or who have experienced a life-changing event, it can be a real struggle to meet the cost of suitable clothing for the next job interview, new job, funeral, court appearance or another event. Our clothing program, located at our Tuggeranong Community Centre, provides men and women in need with free clothing, shoes and accessories for these events. To access, please phone 6293 6500 to make an appointment.

Communities@Work clothing program

Homelessness Support and Other Essential Services

Homelessness

We provide support for individuals and families who are, or are at risk of being,  homeless. We can provide bedding (subject to availability),  access to showers and also shower packs, food for people who are ‘sleeping rough’, clothing, transitional housing and crisis support.

Transitional Housing

We provide transitional accommodation for people in need, including those escaping domestic violence.  Our Reach Home program is one of a number of specialist homelessness services that receive funding under the National Affordable Housing Agreement (NAHA), jointly funded by the ACT and Australian governments. We receive referrals from OneLink and provide safe, transitional, supported accommodation for families. We also provide outreach support as required.

To be eligible, families must be referred to us through OneLink. A register of available emergency accommodation is held by OneLink. Phone 1800 176 468.

Useful Contacts:

  • OneLink 1800176468
  • Domestic Violence Crisis Service: 6280 0900
    Visit: www.dvcs.org.au(link is external) for more information
  • Emergency – Police, Ambulance, Fire 000
  • Police attendance 131 444 (24hrs)
  • ACT Police  6256 7777 (24hrs)
  • Canberra Hospital 6244 2222
  • Calvary Hospital 6201 6111
  • Men’s Line 1300 789 978 (24hrs)
  • Lifeline 13 11 14
  • Kids Help Line 1800 551 800 (24hrs)
  • Parentline ACT 6287 3833
  • Mental Health Crisis Assessment Team 1800 629 354
  • Child Protection After Hours Crisis Service 1300 556 729 (24hrs)

Communities@Work can also assist with information and referrals to other services.

Our Locations

Tuggeranong Community Centre

245 Cowlishaw Street, GREENWAY ACT, 2900

Gungahlin Community Centre

47 Ernest Cavanagh Street, GUNGAHLIN ACT, 2912

Tuggeranong Community Centre

245 Cowlishaw Street, GREENWAY ACT, 2900

Gungahlin Community Centre

47 Ernest Cavanagh Street, GUNGAHLIN ACT, 2912

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