Alex Fabiani: Global Care: Westfield Local Heroes 2019
Family tragedy unleashes a passion for caring
Hardworking. Loving. Cheeky
The turning point in Alex Fabiani’s life came during the ten years that he spent looking after his brother who was left a quadriplegic by a heroin overdose.
During that time Alex gave up drugs and alcohol himself and embarked on a journey of recovery that included becoming an advocate for the disabled and reigniting his passion for writing.
After Alex’s brother died, he founded the Infinity Church Community Meals Kitchen South Morang, which provides more than one hundred meals a week to people in need and also gives families food parcels that include items needed for children’s school lunches, including treats.
“I started helping out more at church and then one day it came to me that the kitchen was what I wanted to do,” says Alex, who never declines anyone seeking a home-cooked meal.
“Our community meals kitchen is not just for food, it’s a place for social interaction and to feel wanted.”
Alex has written two inspiring books about his life story and feels grateful to be voted a Westfield Local Hero. “I’ve learnt it’s not about me, it’s what I can do for others,” he says.
Over the past nine years, the Community Meals Kitchen has provided thousands of meals to the homeless, elderly, disabled, struggling families and refugees. Last Christmas, Alex and his team of volunteers handed out hundreds of parcels, more than a thousand toys and delighted women with gifts of a handbag.
Thanks to Alex’s involvement in local emergency relief and disability networks, the program also offers help beyond a regular meal. “We give out information about other organisations and support programs that may be able to help people,” he says.
Westfield Local Heroes are nominated and voted for by their communities, with the three top finalists per Westfield centre each awarded a $10,000 grant for their affiliated organisation.
The Community Meals Kitchen, which is affiliated to Global Care, will use the grant to buy kitchen equipment and to relieve the constant pressure to raise funds.
“The kitchen costs over $20,000 per year to run and we don’t charge for meals,” says Alex.
For further information on the Westfield Local Heroes program, click here.