When Nabila runs out of something she needs for dinner, she’ll pinch aside and see if they can help her.
Last week it was an onion, so she could make her three sons a decent meal.
Not too long ago, she gave extra boxes of fruit to friends she knew were in trouble.
Money-saving helplines, hacks and analytics – cost of living updates
This is happening more and more often at his estate in Byker, one of Newcastle’s most deprived areas.
Improvising and supporting each other is one of the most basic ways to Cost of life crisis.
Almost everyone’s budgets are under pressure, but it’s especially daunting for those with no savings to fall back on.
Nabila’s sons are lucky enough to have a free summer activity club that sets up on the lawn in front of their house on Wednesdays during the summer holidays.
Youth worker Rebecca Lloyd was hosting the games and told Sky News: “Even today I just spoke to a youngster who won’t tell his parents that his shoes are now too small for them because they know the problems it will cause because…it’s the reality.”
The club is run by Children North East, one of 70 charities which this week called on the Government to do much more to tackle the growing financial storm people find themselves in.
Chief executive Leigh Elliott told Sky News that more and more families are reaching out to them for help in an area which already had some of the highest child poverty rates in the UK.
“Demand has skyrocketed,” she said.
“It’s a ticking time bomb…which will impact everyone. By the time we get to winter it will be overkill and people won’t have anything left, and what are people going to TO DO ?
“Your criminality will increase, anti-social behavior will increase.
“You will have more [of a] divide in communities.
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For many in Byker, their main link to the rest of the city – to jobs and opportunity – is the Tyne and Wear Underground.
It may be an essential service that isn’t actually run for profit, but they too have rising bills. Electricity costs to power trains have risen from £8m a year to over £16m in the past 12 months.
A new fleet of energy-efficient trains due to enter service next year can’t come soon enough.
Finance and resources director John Fenwick told Sky News: “We have cost pressures everywhere we look.
“You just have to try and absorb it…we have to keep going because we’re an essential public service so we just have to find a way.”
But he added: “If the cost of living crisis continues on and on, at some point we will have to determine if we can maintain services, but for this year and next we have a plan.”
Read more: Why have food prices risen so much?
Staying the course as prices climb at their fastest pace in 40 years is a juggling act that tests people’s resolve and resources.
With further increases expected over the fall and winter, borrowing the onion once in a while just won’t be enough.