Thousands of disadvantaged students across Victoria have received a helping hand over the holidays with free meals sent out to those in need, amid the cost of living crisis.
Nearly 6000 food packs have been delivered to families over the summer break, while about 28 million free, healthy meals have been provided to students in 1000 Victorian schools, as part of the state government's School Breakfast Clubs program.
The $71 million initiative, first launched in 2016, seeks to address the impact that disadvantage can have on education outcomes by offering free and healthy food in partnership with Foodbank Victoria.
Under the program, healthy breakfasts are available to all students, with lunches and home food supplies, including food products for holiday periods provided to students requiring additional support.
Victorian education minister Natalie Hutchins said it was important for students to receive support when needed.
"The program has already made a huge difference to students who need a bit of extra support to have a nutritious, delicious meal every morning and we're proud to support the School Breakfast Club all year round," she said.