WANTING to help others has motivated speaker Elizabeth Chittock to provide free weekly talks at The Pantry in South City.
Everyone was welcome to the first session, on Monday, 1pm-2pm, with the opportunity for group discussion until 3pm.
Following the theme of “learning how your family can survive and thrive”, Mrs Chittock said she would talk each week on a variety of subjects, including gardening, money management, food, sugar-free eating and craft.
She wanted to share her knowledge because she saw a lot of people who were struggling and did not have the solutions to overcome the obstacles in their lives, she said.
Having learnt first-hand how to respond to personal health issues, and how to live frugally while she and her husband paid 66% of their income in mortgage repayments (at 20.4% interest) in order to purchase their home and become debt-free had taught Mrs Chittock various life skills on sustainable living, budgeting, wellness and health which she has shared with others over the past 30 years.
Mrs Chittock said she was keen to share her acquired knowledge to help others develop skills to use towards good financial health, personal good health and wellness.
“I quickly understood people could choose to earn more (if they were able) to pay for things they needed and wanted, or they might find other innovative ways to provide for themselves – working for themselves instead of paying others to provide all their needs.”
Having previously spoken at the South Coast Environment Centre in Riverton, and in Tuatapere as a regular weekly speaker, Mrs Chittock said she was keen to continue to share her knowledge since moving to Invercargill.
“There will be some demonstrations, some talks and occasionally there will be hands-on workshops using the commercial kitchen in The Pantry.”
South Alive project co-ordinator Janette Malcolm said she was happy to have a speaker talk on community-related subjects at The Pantry.
“Because we are community owned, one of our goals is to contribute back to the community, and one of the ways we can do that is beginning to increase people’s knowledge in key areas, such as health and nutrition.”
It also gave people an opportunity to build a new community and connect with others, especially if people came regularly, she said.
“When a community begins to connect, it is important as it can help people gain better mental health by being connected and, as a result, happier.
“That was one of the reasons the cafe was in The Pantry… hospitality and community connection.”