A Papamoa community organisation has thrown down a challenge to community organisations to "match us or beat us" in collecting non-perishable food items for the Tauranga foodbank.

Papamoa Progressive Association, a ratepayers and residents group, has launched a food drive after reading of the foodbank's struggles.

Chairman Wayne George said he had invited members of the association to bring a non-perishable food item to the next three meetings to help Tauranga's most needy.

"It's a call to action for every other community organisation. If we got even just 50 per cent on board then maybe we could start filling the shelves at the foodbank."

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Mr George said there was strength in numbers and a little from many would help the wonderful, yet sadly needed, foodbank to thrive.

"It mortifies me that in 2017 we are still having to make collections for a foodbank."

The Papamoa Progressive Association helped with the Foodbank Christmas Appeal last year, gathering food from their members and donating a supermarket trolley-worth of food.

"If all our Tauranga community organisations agreed to combine our food drive efforts on a minimum of twice per year, it would assist the foodbank to stay ahead of demand."

Mr George said on a personal note, donating to the foodbank was a way of paying it forward.

"Who knows what's around the corner, one day I might need to go there for food," he said.

Foodbank manager Nicki Goodwin said hard times could fall on anyone, and they had seen people from all walks of society coming to them for help - the elderly and income earners.

Mr George said there were many other ways to generate food donations from the community - he was in talks with Papamoa Plaza about setting up a collection point so shoppers could easily pop a food item in a box while they shopped.

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"We're not going to achieve anything overnight but if we all do a little bit we could achieve a lot."

There was already a growing pile of food items at the Bay of Plenty Times office as people kindly came in to donate for the foodbank.

The foodbank was in need of things such as tinned soup, tinned tomatoes, canned tuna and pasta sauce.

The Papamoa Progressive Association's next meeting was April 10 at Papamoa Sports and Recreation Centre on Parton Rd.

Want to help?

Bring donations of non-perishable food or cash to the Bay of Plenty Times office at 405 Cameron Rd between 8.30am and 5pm or to the Tauranga Community Foodbank at Unit G, 4 Brook St by Fraser Cove.