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Inner Wheel Club of South Wairarapa

August 21, 2019 August 2019, Regular Features No Comments

At the launch, from the left, Helen Grey, Graham Evans, Kathleen Rushworth, Councillor Colin Wright, Ali Rankin, David Halford, Debrah Johns, Liz Poynter, Anne Hayden, Peter Bennett.

The Greytown Shared Pantry is now up and running thanks to a joint effort by the following South Wairarapa organisations: Rotary, Inner Wheel, MensShed, Lionesses, Greytown Medical Centre, Lamb Peters Publishing and Fresh Choice. Finally we are up there with Carterton, Featherston and Masterton where these ‘give and take’ food facilities have been helping their communities for quite a while.  It is on the veranda of the Greytown Medical Centre, 186 East Street, Greytown, and is open 24/7. It was great to have one of our South Wair

arapa District Council Councillors, Colin Wright, to untie the ribbon and officially declare it open on behalf of the Mayor, Viv Napier on 21 June. 

In order to manage it a small group has been formed. It intends to follow a Wairarapa food bank’s example of adding simple recipes to help inspire people to prepare and enjoy their food even more. Inner Wheel and Lionesses will be tasked with the job of sharing some of their family favourites that do not take too much preparation. 

To the cooks out there, any gems you might have in your recipe books, please email to Kay Gates at: kay.gates@icloud.com.

Interestingly, the free food movement started in Otara, South Auckland, the “Open Street Pantry Movement, called “Pequation.pdftaka Kai” the Maori meaning for Food Storehouse. It evolved to meet a need at grass roots level, facilitating neighbours to help their neighbours. The general principle is, TAKE WHAT YOU NEED OR GIVE WHAT YOU CAN. According to Pequation_1.pdftaka Kai, there are now 117 opened pantries, with another 53 under construction (sourced online 26 July 2019). Although the Greytown Pantry is not registered with Pequation_2.pdftaki Kai, we have accessed their guidelines and advice, as we acknowledge we are on a steep learning curve. As well as sprouting around New Zealand, the Open Pantry Movement has inspired other countries like Africa to develop similar facilities.   

Back to the Greytown launch, we were very fortunate to have generous donations of food from our Community Board Chair, Leigh Hay, Chris Ward of Fresh Choice and Inner Wheel members. So the pantry is well stocked. One gentleman arrived with an item who told us his wife said he “could take one thing only from their pantry and not to bring anything back!” Other members of the public expressed their delight that the Pantry was there. Debrah Johns, Operation Manager of the Medical noted that there was definitely a need for a shared pantry in Greytown so please spread the word.

The MensShed have done a magnificent job of building the pantry which is very securely bolted against the Medical Centre veranda wall. They have also installed trellis in the garden opposite the pantry to provide shade and protection from the winter sun. This may also serve to provide some privacy for those accessing the food. The pantry was funded by Rotary and the trellis by Inner Wheel, both of South Wairarapa.

A word for those people who are donating food, please ensure that it is fresh if it is fruit or vegetables from your gardens, and unopened if in packets, bottles or tins. Any food that is found that has been previously opened will be removed and thrown out. This is to safeguard the wellbeing of those taking food. Donations such as tinned vegetables, eg. tomatoes, or dried fruit or vegetables are very welcome.  As time goes on we will have a better idea of what is in demand.

Finally, a big thank you to the community of Greytown for supporting this project.

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