Imagine a world where you can stroll down the street and grab some fresh nutritious homegrown food left from some kindly neighbour – for free.

That’s exactly the kind of world Food Is Free Inc. in Ballarat fosters.

Started five years ago by Lou Ridsdale beside her home in central Ballarat, Food Is Free Laneway has grown from strength to strength thanks to the contribution of her local neighbourhood.

It is a classic example of how grassroots can make a difference, and the not-for-profit now boasts two fantastic sites – the pre-existing Laneway, as well as Food Is Free Green Space, donated to Food Is Free by City Of Ballarat in 2017 for the group of fifty volunteers to grow food en masse for their community. It has been featured on ABCTV’s Gardening Australia, and Ch 7’s Better Homes & Gardens, along with a multitude of other media outlets, and enjoys up to one hundred visitors per day. People come for a chat, for food, for seeds, seedlings and pots or to drop off their kitchen scraps or donate some garden pots. Mostly it is for connection to their community.

Food Is Free Inc. also provides education on food waste, environmental issues, and regularly run sustainability workshops at Green Space. It is a beacon of hope in a sometimes fragile world.

Go to for more info.

Contact info

305 Ripon St S, Ballarat Central VIC 3350, Australia

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