The Community

Make yourself acquainted with the latest happenings around you: from food to shops, explore all the amenities that turn your house a home.


UEM Sunrise & Foodbank Victoria Partnership

Media Highlights

17 May 2021

Left to right: Ridzuan Affendy, Azizul Khairul Azneal Ahmad Tarmizi, Sally Capp, and Dave McNamara.


The Australian UEM Sunrise team and Foodbank Victoria have welcomed over 16,000 students through the door of its Melbourne’s International Student Pop-Up Store in Aurora Melbourne Central since opening its doors in October 2020. 


With the aim to provide free and fresh food to the international student community who experienced many hardships during COVID-19, the CBD pop-up has supplied over 195,000kg of food to students from over 263 different learning institutions and 84 different nationalities. 


Melbourne Lord Mayor Sally Capp visited the pop-up at Aurora Melbourne Central to commemorate the significant milestone and recognise the success of the innovative partnership.


As a new university semester begins, a large proportion of these students will continue to face challenging conditions with limited access to casual or part-time employment and barriers to travelling back to home countries. International students have also not been eligible for the Australian government’s various financial support measures instated during the pandemic.

Sally Capp, Lord Mayor of Melbourne said: “International students play a critical role in Melbourne’s economy and add to the richness of our culture. It’s important we continue to provide support to our international students that are here in Melbourne through programs such as the Pop-Up Store. We will also continue to advocate for those stuck overseas due to closed borders to be allowed back into Australia to further their studies.”


Ong Chee Wei, Director of UEM Sunrise in Australia said the team was proud to continue to support Melbourne’s international student community and continue the impactful partnership with Foodbank Victoria in 2021 
“As a new semester begins at tertiary institutions, the international student community in Melbourne continues to face challenges such as a difficult labour market and distance from their families.”


Dave McNamara, CEO of Foodbank Victoria said: “Feeding people in need is what we do - but we realise now that the pop-up store is about so much more than food and dignity. We’re bringing thousands of international students back into the city, not only helping to reinvigorate the CBD, but also providing them with unique a chance to gather, share stories and support each other as they struggle with the challenges that continue to be thrown their way.”


Foodbank Victoria currently operates the pop-up grocery store at Aurora Melbourne Central three days a week, re-stocking it daily with fresh, culturally diverse food supplies and ensuring a COVID-safe environment. The International Student Pop-Up Store will continue operating at Aurora Melbourne Central throughout March.

UEM Sunrise uses cookies to personalise and enhance your experience on our site.
Visit our Privacy Policy to learn more. By using our site, you agree to our use of cookies.