Sunday marks the start of Anti-Poverty Week, which aims to highlight the hidden hardships of poor people and raise funds for programs to support people in need.
YWCA Canberra executive director Frances Crimmins said it was easy to overlook poverty in areas as affluent as Canberra.
"At YWCA Canberra those delivering many of our programs experience the realities first hand," she said.
"(It's) when serving soup to those who don't often get a regular feed, providing a place to sleep for those who've run out of options, giving someone a bus ticket who might otherwise not get to the doctor, and paying a family's electricity bill in the middle of a freezing Canberra winter."
Anti-Poverty Week in Australia was established as an expansion of the UN's annual International Anti-Poverty Day on October 17.
The week in Canberra will include a wide range of events, from seminars, to stalls to dining events and sausage sizzles.
A series of dining events called Eat, Pay, Love will include a three-course meal at The Elk & Pea on Lonsdale Street, Braddon, on Tuesday, October 14, when guests can pay what they want. There will be no set prices, but diners can pay extra to subsidise a meal for someone less fortunate. The proceeds will go to Food Bank NSW/ACT and there will be two sittings at 6pm and 8pm.
Barbecue events will be held in Woden, at the ANU and Garema Place Civic throughout the week.
A full list of events can be seen at www.antipovertyweek.org.au