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Malabar’s first free community dinner was a roaring success on Sunday 27 June with 55 free meals cooked and served free of charge to Hunter Valley families and individuals in need.

Malabar’s manager of Health, Safety, Environment and Community, Donna McLaughlin, said the event was a great night made possible by the amazing volunteers who cooked, cleaned and served.

“The dinner was a great way for the community to come together in a COVID-safe way to share a meal and a conversation.

“A massive thank you to all the volunteers that helped us cook, clean, serve meals, hand out face masks and just generally making sure everyone was looked after. It was heart-warming to see so much community spirt.

“A special thanks also has to go to De-anne Douglas whose support and reach into our community made the event so special.

“We’ve had such great feedback and we are glad that we could help the community in these tough times.”

Blackroo’s De-anne Douglas, who helped organise and coordinate the event, added: “I’ve had so much positive feedback from the community.

“We were able to provide over 55 hot meals including amazing desserts and provide free hair cuts to members of our local community. For some of these families, a simple haircut is a luxury that they can’t afford.

“I’m so grateful to have the opportunity to be involved in this event with Malabar. The night was a massive success and people are already asking when we will hold another one.”

In addition to community events, Malabar maintains a community sponsorship program where local organisations and charities can apply for funding or in-kind donations.