A big-hearted café owner at Grangeway Community Centre has started a ‘community fridge’ which is proving a lifeline to those left out in the cold by the benefit system.

Community fridges are designed to support communities to reduce food wastage and support those who are in need and struggling financially to have access to a good food source.

There is also space for people to donate toiletries and sanitary products for people in need.

It runs on the premise of ‘give when you can, take when you need’. The fridge is for retail businesses, restaurants and individual people to share perfectly good food that is edible and would otherwise go to waste or works on the generosity of the local community.

Mandi McDonald from Macy’s Café set up the fridge, as well as a cupboard next to it  for people to donate toiletries and other necessities.

The operators are tasked to ensure they make sure that the fridge is a safe environment for food sharing, mainly in regards to Food Hygiene standards but they cannot take responsibility for the condition of the contents of this fridge.

Mandi said: “Everyone who puts food into this fridge is responsible for the safety of the food and will follow the guidelines provided.

“By taking food from the community fridge you commit to making your own judgement as to whether or not the contents you take are suitable for your own use.

“It works on a no questions asked basis, people access the fridge and take what they need.”

https://www.hubbub.org.uk/the-community-fridge – brief video about a well utilised community fridge in Swadlincote

Organisers have informed social work teams who are beginning to assist their clients to access the fridge which is proving useful when individuals are in crisis, foodbanks are closed or of a distance to someone’s home.