FACING surging power bills and rising costs on just about every household expense, Megan Russell is keeping her food bill down to free up money for other essentials.
It's made possible by a vital service in the Bathurst community, The Little Pantry.
By doing the bulk of her grocery shopping there, Ms Russell is saving $100 or more per week.
"If people just give it a try, once they come, they'll come again and again," she said.
"It is a big saving of at least $100 on a weekly shop."
She started using the service around six years ago, at a time when she and her husband still had three of their children living at home.
But even though it's just the two of them now, the rising cost of living - which includes electricity bills of around $2500 each quarter - has meant it's more important than ever to save money.
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Two of her daughters are now using The Little Pantry for their own young families.
"So many people should come, especially if you've got a young family. It'll save you save you so much," Ms Russell said.
The types of people needing help are changing, with more young, working families reaching out for assistance as household costs skyrocket.
It is a trend being seen at The Little Pantry, which is run by The Greens on William to help people save money on their grocery shop.
The program has been running for years, but more recently the number of parents with young children utilising it each week has increased.
Manager of the Greens on William, Rebecca Mathie, said it was a direct response to the rising cost of living.
"We've definitely seen an increase in the amount of families coming in and accessing the service, and that obviously is a result of high electricity bills, high gas bills and the cost of living in general, not to mention people's mortgages on the rise," she said.
"So, we have seen an influx of people accessing the service and actually purchasing more stock and more items each week to reduce the shopping at local supermarkets, where the cost per item is higher."
At The Little Pantry, which operates every Thursday, people can choose to pay $22, $32, $42 or $62 for their groceries, with each price corresponding to a certain number of points they can use.
Items on the Pantry's shopping list are grouped by how many points they are worth - one, two or three - and it is up to each individual shopper to determine how they allocate their points.
They then receive fresh fruit, vegetables and bread in addition to the items they've bought with their points.
"Depending on the items they select, for $22 they could be walking out with over 20 items, so it's definitely value for money," Ms Mathie said.
"They're all pantry, non-perishable items, and then there's fruit, vegetables and breads on top of that that are included at no additional charge.
"When you think about the cost of bread is even $4 a loaf now, just getting two or three loaves, depending on the size of your family, there's a $12 saving right there."
While it can be hard for some people to reach out for help, Ms Mathie said anyone who uses The Little Pantry will receive no judgement.
"They can come in and have a cup of tea and talk to one of our volunteers, or sit down and talk to other people that are utilising the service," she said.
"There's no welfare stigma attached to it."
The program is also open to anyone in the community, not only pension or healthcare card holders, and there is no referral required.
People who would like to use the service just need to fill out the registration form on The Greens on William website.