AUT opens the pantry for students in hardship

By Regan Paranihi

Auckland University of Technology has set up a new initiative on all three of its campuses called Foodie Godmother, which is a free open-door pantry.

It's an innovative way to help nurture students bellies and souls and those students living in hardship. 

The AUT Students' Association is lending a helping hand to its peers. 

AUT Students Association vice president, Renata White (Ngāti Tama, Tainui) says, "Foodie Godmother is our community cupboard where all students can access anything from food or toiletries if they are struggling and not able to afford them at that time".

This initiative was launched last month as a response to many students facing financial hardship and with little or no money at all to buy food.

"We recognised as a council as well as an association that not all students can meet the minimum requirement for food and for essentials in the home," says White.

Foodie Godmother saw 70 students through its doors within the first week of its operation and White says it is definitely something AUT students benefit from.

"Many students who have said that they have used it have said that they've enjoyed it, they've really appreciated it and they're just loving it". 

Although staff and students have joined forces to donate whatever they can to help, they're still calling for donations and financial support from those who can assist. 

"When we first started students actually wanted to know if they could donate to it, and they have.  Lecturers also wanted to donate, and they have.  So we are initiating a task-force to obtain sponsors".

If you would like to donate to the cause please visit their or follow them on Facebook here.