It’s cool to be kind – the People’s Fridge is taking off

Written by on June 16, 2016 in Business, Campaigns, charity, Community, Health, News - Comments Off on It’s cool to be kind – the People’s Fridge is taking off

People's Fridge explainerBrixton People’s Fridge project has taken off. It has already achieved more than three-quarters of its £1,000 funding target through a Crowdfunder appeal after only a couple of days.

It will be London’s first community fridge, although the idea for it came from an article about one in India and there are fridges elsewhere in Europe, including Spain.

When up and running, the fridge will enable people and businesses to donate spare food or food that would otherwise go to waste. Others can then go to the fridge to pick up what they want.

People behind the fridge project include Brixton residents, food activists, Pop Brixton traders and market traders.

It grew out of a course at Impact Hub Brixton in Pop Brixton that saw 25 people get together once a week for six weeks to try to find answers for the food problems that people in Lambeth and beyond face.

Made possible by a grant from the Incredible Edible Lambeth Love Your Roots Award, it used an approach known as U.Lab – a way of leading profound change developed by researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Also backing the project are Lambeth Food Partnership; Transition Town Brixton; Pop Brixton and the Brixton Pound.

There could be more than one fridge if the fundraising goes well over target.

Organisers will buy “a big, solid fridge that can take a bit of wear and tear”.

They will put aside a little of the cash raised for maintenance and upkeep. “If we hit our target by a lot we’ll install another fridge to help more people,” they say.

“We make sure that the food in the fridge is within date and safe to eat. We clean it. The fridge is open for all to contribute to and take from, but we keep an eye on it.”

And the fridge is only a start: “We have a whole list of ideas for giving and sharing that will help build more generous communities that care about one another.

“But the fridge is our starting point. It’s cool to be kind.”

About the Author

Alan Slingsby moved to Brixton just as the 1981 uprising began. His nearest pub was the Effra and nearest off licence the Frontline — long gone in an earlier wave of closures of treasured community establishments. Has edited newspapers for the National Union of Students and National Union of Teachers. Now makes a living designing magazines and books and anything else people will pay him for.

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