A Rotary Club of
Canterbury Initiative

Total FORaMEAL distributed (for FREE!)

2023 Schools & Uni Packing Days Applications now open


FORaMEAL, a project of the Rotary Club of Canterbury and M.A.T.E.S. for Change, is an initiative to help provide emergency relief meals for those impacted by natural disasters. Each year over 150,000 meals are provided free of charge to vulnerable individuals and families across the Asia Pacific region in times of disaster. To date, over 500,000 meals have been distributed for FREE! 

In 2020 -2021 the Rotary Club of Canterbury decided to redirect part of our FORaMEAL effort to help the most vulnerable in the Stage 4 COVID-19 restrictions in Melbourne. Our aim simple – to provide 100,000 nutritious meals to vulnerable Victorians. To date, more than 200,000 meals have been distributed as part of our FORaMEAL COVID-19 response. 

By August 2021, more than 200,000 meals were delivered through the FORaMEAL COVID response. During this period 27 community groups and students from over 30 schools participated in assisting the COVID-FORaMEAL rollout. Our efforts were recognised by the Victorian Government as well as the Victorian Multicultural in the Multicultural Award for Excellence 2020 in the category of Community Innovation. You can find a link to the VMC Award for Excellence here

Our Process


— We focus on nutrition

As a biochemist, Dr. Doug Hawley designed and formulated the FORaMEAL packs to include a balance and nutritious blend of carbohydrates, important fats and proteins together with a sachet of essential vitamins and minerals.


— We fund every meal

97% of every dollar we raise for the FORaMEAL project goes into the producing, packaging and delivering the meal itself. Everyone on the FORaMEAL project volunteer their time, experience and expertise to this cause. 

2.5% + GST is paid to Rotary Australia World Community Service Ltd. (RAWCS) for administering the donations. 


— We locally source every meal

We use the money we raise and the in-kind donations we receive to purchase the three core ingredients – oats, lentils and rice, together with essential vitamins and minerals as required. We would like to take this opportunity to thank our Major Sponsors in donating core ingredients in our FORaMEAL packs. 


— We pack every meal

Each year, volunteers from across the Rotary network produce, seal and box approximately 150,000 meals for distribution the following year. All meals available for distributions in the Victorian COVID-19 Stage 4 Restriction were packed in 2019.


— We donate every meal

In the past, the meals packed have been sent
abroad to vulnerable communities in S.E.Asia. This year our focus is also helping vulnerable families during
the COVID-19 crisis.


— We build community & trust

In addition to the FORaMEAL packs, the project offers us the opportunity to strengthen community trust, mutual understanding and the Aussie Spirit of Mateship. All our sponsors, volunteers and the FORaMEAL team feel just as blessed as those who receive the FORaMEAL packs. 

Who We Are

The Rotary Club of Canterbury has been serving our local & international communities since 1987. We have an active social and project program. Our members love being part of our Club and enjoy participating in all our activities.

Our Club President for 2016-17, Dr. Doug Hawley OAM, together with the support of the Club started the FORaMEAL Project. Each year the FORaMEAL project delivers 150,000 meals to individuals and families in disaster affected regions across South East Asia. 

The COVID-19 restrictions has added considerable strain on the communities and some individuals and families have been struggling to put food on the table. The Club, together with the FORaMEAL Committee decided to quickly act to fulfil this needs within the community and as a result we have set a goal of providing 100,000 nutritious meal packs during the current COVID-19 crisis.

Working with community groups such as Australian Communities Association of Australia Inc as well as the Multicultural Commission and M.A.T.E.S. for Change Australia we hope to get these simple, yet needed meals to those most in need. 

Doug Hawley, Past President and Founder of the FORaMEAL project. 

Our Impact So Far

Dr. Doug Hawley OAM
FORaMEAL Founder

Despite its simplicity, FORaMEAL is important because it gives a nutritious meal free of charge to people in need during a crisis. We live in such a great country with opportunity, security and prosperity abound. Yet, it gives me great pain to see vulnerable families and individuals without enough food, support and hope during this Stage 4 lockdown. FORaMEAL is our Club’s simple way of bringing hope to those most in need during this time of crisis. 

Mr. Bwe Thay
Victorian Multicultural Commissioner

The Rotary Club of Canterbury must be recognised and commended for their efforts in supporting our fellow multicultural Australians in this difficult time.  The FORaMEAL project is both practical and significant. The capacity to make available 100,000 meals over the Stage 4 lockdown will bring hope to many disadvantaged members of our multicultural community. On behalf of the VMC, I would like thank the Rotary Club of Canterbury and the FORaMEAL team in stepping up during this difficult time. 


Working together to make a difference