2021, what a year!

We know this year has thrown us all many challenges, and no doubt there will be some more to come, but if we have learnt anything over the last few years, it has been just how important community is!

We have loved seeing everyone come together to support one another, and the incredible generosity of our community.  So while we have had to cancel a few events like our annual Trolley Derby, Street Party, and the Drive-in Movies, we have still managed to achieve so much together as a community. We have a few highlights of the year further down in the newsletter, but first we have a few thank yous to make...


First up, we want to send a huge thank you to our customers. Every time you make a purchase it contributes to the projects and events run by the South Alive Trust.

To those of you that have supported The Pay It Forward programme, we’re doubly grateful. Through your incredible generosity, 719 Pay it Forward food bags have been purchased for distribution in the community and over $7,000 donated in cash to provide extra items like fresh meat and vegetables, and slow cookers.
We would also like to acknowledge the contribution to the PIF programme from the following supporters: Foodstuffs South Island Community Trust reSTART Grant, MSD Food Secure Communities & Covid-19 resurgence funding, Christadelphian Ecclesia and Aurora College.

Farewell and thanks to Janette Malcolm

This month we farewell Janette Malcolm as Chair of the South Alive Limited (Pantry) Board. Janette was the driving force in the creation of South Alive in early 2012. The establishment of South Alive was facilitated by the Invercargill City Council through its focus on Urban Rejuvenation, one of its key strategies in the 2012-2022 Long Term PlanJanette Malcolm was contracted to drive the process and she did.

Janette’s first step was to invite a group of about 30 people with an interest in the issues surrounding South Invercargill to a brainstorming session on 14 February 2012. This was followed in April 2012 by a public meeting held in St Andrews Church Hall attended by more than 100 people. And so was born the South Invercargill Urban Rejuvenation Project, a community led programme driven by a steering committee and eight action groups.  By the end of 2012, that steering group was turned into a legal entity, to be called the South Invercargill Urban Rejuvenation Charitable Trust, trading as South Alive. Janette took on the role of the Manager, a role she held until January 2016.

Some of her highlights include:
  • persuading of the owner of the South City Mall that his asset would benefit from a bit of a facelift and that South Alive was willing to assist
  • setting up of the South Alive Office in the Mall
  • persuading the Invercargill City Council to mitigate 15 years of deferred maintenance of footpaths and street furniture around the South City Shopping Centre.
  • installation of the Aurora Street Lights along Elles Road and Martin Street
  • the inaugural South City Street Party to celebrate the turning on of the Aurora Lights
  • persuading of the Mall owner to allow South Alive to develop the waste section behind the Mall carpark into a community area with gardens, half basketball court, gym equipment, a stage and a grassed gathering area
  • development of the Dog Park
  • establishment of an Art Gallery
  • management of the Cliff Broad Bequest that resulted in the Whale’s Tail sculpture at Russell Square.
In late 2015 South Alive investigated the idea of creating a social enterprise and Janette wrote a feasibility study and business case to create The Pantry out of the old Bin Inn building. She led the Project Management and from 2016 until November 2021 was the chairperson of South Alive Ltd (The Pantry). Some of her highlights included supporting the establishment of the Pay It Forward programme, the Village Market Days, the charity dinners, and World Kindness Day.

Her contribution and the enormous donation of time spent focused on the Pantry will be missed by all the team, we wish her all the best and no doubt will continue to see her having a coffee down at The Pantry in the New Year.

Thank you so much Janette for the many initiatives and projects you have been involved in at both South Alive and the Pantry, that help make postcode 9812 - South Invercargill the great community it is today.


Farewell and thanks to John Schol
In December 2016 John Schol accepted the invitation to become an inaugural Director on the South Alive Limited Board, with its focus on developing The Pantry into a successful social enterprise.
John holds a Master of Business Administration (MBA) is a Fellow Chartered Accountant, holds a Certificate of Public Practice with Chartered Accountants Australia New Zealand and is also a Chartered Member of the Institute of Directors. He brought to the table his vast governance experience and skills in finance and strategy. John is currently CEO of Malloch McClean Limited and so all of these credentials were put to use from the moment The Pantry doors opened until November this year.

John’s mantra is this:  “You only have to do two things to be successful – work out what you want to do, then go out and do it…” John certainly brought that attitude to his role on The Pantry Board which has seen some really positive change from the initial growth phase to where it is now. John was a great sounding board who offered a unique perspective which will be missed. We know John will be keeping himself busy and will always be a great supporter of The Pantry.

Thanks a million John and we will see you down at The Pantry soon
South Alive is an urban rejuvenation and community led development organisation based in South Invercargill, with a vision to ‘build a vibrant, diverse community that takes the lead in its own future.'
Through a wide range of volunteer action groups focused on community identified projects and events, and supported by our staff, we have achieved significant change in South Invercargill in the ten years we have been operating. The Pantry was established in 2017 as a social enterprise business, both to earn income to fund South Alive's community projects and to build resilience by means of its purpose of ‘nurturing the spirit of generosity and well-being in the community.’
We are seeking new trustees to join our South Alive Trust and / or our South Alive Ltd Pantry board. These are voluntary positions and we are looking for people who are excited and motivated about enabling community-led change and development of new and innovative projects along with increasing pride, resilience and wellbeing for our South Invercargill community. The new trustees will have relevant skills or experience that may include any of:
● Vision and strategic thinking
● Retail business operations and performance
● Financial experience
● Marketing and promotions, including social media
● Practical know-how, commitment and enthusiasm
● Knowledge of the South Invercargill community through residency, business       or organisation
The South Alive Trust board meets on the second Tuesday of the month from 6.30pm.
The South Alive Limited Pantry board meets on the same day at 5.15pm
In addition, attendance at related activities and events is encouraged
For further information please phone the Chair of South Alive Trust Beryl Wilcox (027 698 7445) or the Community Development & Operations Manager Courtney Ellison (027 427 7294) or email

See also our websites www.southalive.org.nz and www.thepantry.co.nz along with our facebook sites.
Written expressions of interest may be emailed or posted to South Alive at PO Box 7055, Invercargill.
The closing date is Friday 28 January 2022.
Highlights of 2021
The first panel of the South Alive Heritage Trail was unveiled during the Citizen's Armistice Day Service on 11 November.
Housing seminars covered topics from Church conversions, to tiny homes, to gardening under glass.
The Beautification team have continued their hard work looking after our community gardens.
We have been lucky to have many of our local schools get involved too, like these students from Te Kura o Whare Pa (Fernworth Primary) who baked cookies for us to hand out on World Kindness Day here at South Alive ...
... and sort breadtags for us for the 'Breadtags for Wheelchairs' initiative.
Our Fruit and Nut team have been grateful for the ongoing support from students at Aurora College who help out at their working bees.
The donations for our Pay It Forward programme have been overwhelming including food donations, and these hand made stockings from a local patchworking group.
We have had volunteer bus trips to explore other community gardens and projects.
Our annual fundraising Quiz Night was the biggest ever with over 200 people coming along, and an incredible amount of support from the businesses below with prizes...
We celebrated Volunteer Week with a MAD hatters tea party for our volunteers (MAD standing for 'Making a Difference' which we could all agree our volunteers certainly do!)
A craft swap was started and after being hugely popular is now a regular feature in the South Alive calendar.
School holiday events have included lego building, Active Southland's Playla, raranga (weaving), emergency services fun, teddy bears picnic yoga and much much more!
Looking ahead to 2022

We will be celebrating our 10th Birthday next year and we can't wait!

Keep your eyes out for some more details to come and if you have any special memories from the last 10 years of South Alive we would love to hear them! Get in touch with us by emailing info@southalive.org.nz.

And finally we want to say thank you...

To all of our incredible volunteers who give their time, resources and skills so generously to making South Invercargill a place we can all be proud of, we thank you! South Alive would not be here without your passion and commitment.

To our funders and supporters, thank you for backing the people of South Invercargill to take the lead in our own future. We are incredible grateful for the ongoing support we get from the Department of Internal Affairs through our Community Led Development Partnership, and other funds such as Lotteries and Community Organisations Grants Scheme. We also want to acknowledge our other supporters and funders such as Invercargill City Council, Ministry of Social Development, Community Trust South, Active Southland and all of the local businesses who lend their support with products, services and time. Your contributions help make the vision for South Invercargill come alive so thank you!

Copyright © 2021 The Pantry & South Alive, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
PO Box 7055, Invercargill 9844

Phone: The Pantry 03 214 5200
Monday-Friday 8.30am - 5.30pm Sat-Sun 9.00am - 4.00pm

Phone: South Alive 03 218 6882
Room hire available - Monday-Sunday 7am-10pm
Office hours - 10am-2pm

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