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Fun, Fitness, Food, Finance and Family Values are the five points of the Five Star Families’ programme developed right here in Waiuku by St Andrew’s Community Trust.

Many families struggle to make ends meet on a single or low income. Gaylyn Wills and Pauline Livesey wanted to help empower local families to live healthy, fulfilling lives and so the concept of 5 Star Families was born. The course is designed for up to eight participants and runs for five evenings (once a week) at St Andrew’s Centre. (The programme is currently in hiatus but we hope to run it again in the future.)

Gaylyn and Pauline are accredited Parenting Toolbox facilitators and have run Toolbox courses in Waiuku. During the 5 Star Programme they facilitate discussion around specific parenting issues. This is very much a hands-on course. Each week every member of the group cooks a simple, low-cost, family meal and gets to take it home for the following day’s dinner!

 Each session focuses on one important aspect of managing a family, with a local professional or expert volunteering their skills for the evening. The topics usually include:

  • Managing a Family Budget (CAP – Christians Against Poverty)
  • Food from the Garden (professional gardener)
  • Healthy Eating (nutritionist )
  • Keep Families Healthy  (nurse from Waiuku Medical Centre)
  • Family Fun for all Ages 

Those who attend come from all walks of life and anyone is welcome. An atmosphere of acceptance and care allows participants to come together as a cohesive support group. Above all, the sessions are lots of fun. A few comments from previous years' groups:

“It was awesome”, “I would recommend it to anyone”, I never knew what to expect but I loved every minute of it. The information was spot on!”

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