Helen Charlick


In today's world, extreme poverty and inequality are unjustifiable and unfair. Live Below the Line demonstrates the problem in a concrete way, while raising money to address the problem. Support me as I live below the line by donating now – your generous support will go towards fighting extreme poverty.


Tracy Lawrence donated

Well done Helen, a very worth while cause


Amy James donated

What a fantastic idea! Good luck x


Cheque on my desk

11th June 2012

I have a cheque on my desk to send off after having collected all the offline sponsor money in :) In total I will have raised £200 so thank you to everyone who sponsored me and everyone who encouraged me to stick to it!

The day after

12th May 2012

Today was the first day after living below the line, we celebrated with a cup of tea and the best strawberry cheesecake ever made by my amazing Sheila :D Happy days! I enjoyed living below the line, not because I enjoyed the food (although the pizza last night was tasty!), but because I had some amazing conversations with so many people. I am so thankful for how much I have. If I had to plan how I spent every penny it would be so difficult.

Day 4

10th May 2012

The food part of the challenge been going really well and last nights dinner of jacket potatoes, beans and cheese was incredibly tasty (thanks to the amazing culinary efforts of hubbie who is adding it to his repertoire). Today we had rolls instead of a loaf because we had a power cut half way through the bread makers cycle. The dough was ok so I just dumped it out and made it into rolls, let them rise again and baked (well they were a little burnt). It really made me think about how much we have. Power, ability to make bread, oven, fridge. We have a freezer too although haven't been using it for this challenge! Another thing I've noticed is that we have far less waste since we have so little to eat compared to normal, we use more of the dodgy potatoes, don't throw away the ends of the bread, finish every meal, plates clean. I have raised £187.50 in total now. Thanks to everyone who has sponsored me :) I will be collecting the money soon! I'm not sure how the offline sponsorship gets added to the online stuff, but I've just been getting people to fill in the form and I shall collect the money once I have finished the week, and send it all off at once. Today I have a tiny apple left, and later we are having rice one pot with mushroom, onions and chopped tomatoes. We have to remember to save some of the veg for tomorrows pizza!

The receipt = £8.08

8th May 2012

Our shop for the week

8th May 2012

Shopping: done

6th May 2012

I did some more fundraising at church this morning - I'm up to £175 now, most of it offline sponsorship. After lunch we went to Morrisons to do the shop. We more or less stuck to the plan and in fact the potatoes were reduced and we managed to get a packet of gingernuts and half pint of milk too. The total bill came to £8.08. Pictures to come tomorrow once James has got them off the camera. I now have the bread maker on cooking the first loaf for breakfast and lunch tomorrow (and a slice or two left for Tuesday).

Menu plan

4th May 2012

So after the price comparison we are going to be shopping in Morrisons, the only thing more expensive is the marg! The menu is: Monday: Breakfast - Toast Lunch - Jam sandwich Dinner - Veg curry + rice Tuesday: Breakfast - Toast Lunch - Jam sandwich Dinner - Leftover veg curry + potatoes Wednesday: Breakfast - Toast Lunch - Jam sandwich Dinner - Baked potatoes, beans and cheese Thursday : Breakfast - Toast Lunch - Jam sandwich Dinner - Rice one-pot Friday: Breakfast - Toast Lunch - Jam sandwich Dinner - Homemade pizza Thanks to the amazing people at work (and a few elsewhere) I have managed to raise £100 so far! Keep it coming :)

Price Comparison

4th May 2012

Bread - to make or not to make

20th April 2012

We make our own bread; until our bread tin died a few weeks ago we hadn’t brought a loaf of bread for over 2 years. So for this challenge do we buy a loaf of bread or do we make our own bread? I decided to cost how much a slice of bread costs using the bread maker and compare that to how much it costs if you buy bread. The table shows the cost of a loaf of bread from the bread maker. I have included the price of the electricity to make it comparable. So the cost of a loaf of bread would be 23.1p/loaf. We usually get 8 slices + 2 crusts of bread from each loaf which equates to 2.3p/slice. For a loaf of brought bread at £1.35 a loaf, there are about 20 slices of bread/loaf, the comparable price would be 6.8p/slice. Therefore I think we will go down the bread maker route and make 4 loaves of bread over the 5 days which will give us 40 slices of bread. This will do our breakfasts and lunches for 5 days easily with some leftover. Total cost: 92p for 4 loaves of fresh bread with no added preservatives. Now what to do with the leftover bread!! I think there will be 5 slices left at the end of the week.

Bread table

19th April 2012

First Thoughts

17th April 2012

Ok so maybe not first thoughts because I have been thinking about this challenge for about a week, after first seeing it on Bzz. My reasons for taking the challenge:

  • To see if I can
  • To understand how hard living is for the 1.4 billion people who live in extreme poverty
  • To try and raise money for skillshare international
  • To realise how easy life is for me and how spoilt I am.
My chosen charity: Out of the 23 on the list, none were charities I would normally support, so I did some research into the charities on the list and picked skillshare because they teach women in Asia and Africa business skills so they can start up small businesses. This appears to me to be a fantastic way to spread news, skills and general well being. My thoughts on how I am going to accomplish the challenge:
  • Convince James to join in because a problem shared is a problem halved, well in this case it would double the money, which should make our menu more varied - done
  • No freebies - so must remember to tell Sheila no cakes for us that week!
  • Nothing from the garden (partly because there is very little in it and partly because I wouldn't have 1 if I lived in extreme poverty).
  • Buy local perhaps, free range eggs in the village are £1 for a mixed box, compared to £1.45 in Tesco.
  • Research prices and make a menu plan – next on the list
  • Detox from tea and drink only water
I have already started to think a lot more about the price of food. I was eating an Easter egg which I got it in the sale but it was still £1.99, which would be all I could eat for 2 days.