Former Masterchef contestant and the man behind Ballarat's most famous toasties is supporting efforts to make sure no one goes hungry in Ballarat.
Tim Bone hosted a Feed Ballarat Appeal fundraising box at his toastie stall at the Ballarat Farmers Market on Saturday in an effort to support the cause.
Feed Ballarat is the Ballarat Foundation's annual appeal to fund food security programs and projects in the region.
I almost take cooking and food for granted but for a lot of people it is not that easy and not that guaranteed.Tim Bone
Mr Bone said he encouraged everyone to open up their wallets and donate to a worthy local cause.
"I am in the food scene, so it really resonates with me in terms of being able to feed those who may be less fortunate here in Ballarat, especially in the winter time and coming out of a pandemic," he said.
"We are still going through lockdowns, a lot of people are often out of work and can be struggling to put food on the table. It is so sad it is still a problem even nowadays.
"That is why the Feed Ballarat Appeal really strikes a cord with me. I almost take cooking and food for granted but for a lot of people it is not that easy and not that guaranteed."
The Feed Ballarat Appeal supports food security efforts through a grants program for organisations in the region.
Funding from the appeal allowed the Ballarat Foundation to partner with other organisations and deliver 200 food hampers each fortnight to schools around Ballarat during the pandemic last year.
The foundation will announce this year's grant recipients in July.
RELATED COVERAGE: Thousands of people seek food relief for the first time due to pandemic
Ballarat Foundation chief executive Andrew Eales said the need for food relief increased exponentially when the last lockdown hit.
"It shows the level of insecurity that exists around work at the moment but also exposes how big an impact the pandemic is having on our community," he said.
"Food insecurity is one of the first aspects we see people start to reach out for when they get challenged in this time."
Mr Eales said he was appreciative of the community's response to the Feed Ballarat Appeal so far.
He said the appeal aimed to achieve a long-term and sustainable response to food insecurity.
"The projects and programs we support through the Feed Ballarat are really designed to meet that immediate need but also will help educate and support people to make a longer term impact and reduce the number of people that are finding themselves in these difficult circumstances," he said.
More than 12 per cent of people in Ballarat are forced to rely on accessing community meal and grocery relief programs in order to survive each year.
Visit givenow.com.au/feedballarat to support the Feed Ballarat Appeal.
Have you signed up to The Courier's variety of news emails? You can register below and make sure you are up to date with everything that's happening in Ballarat.