A ‘community refrigerator’ in Chennai has come as a boon for those who are hungry. Anyone who is hungry can take whatever is kept in the fridge for free and without taking permission. Now, one must be thinking that who fills and refills the refrigerator, then it is the community which does it.
Anyone can replenish the fridge with food which can be either home-made or bought from the restaurant. Whoever is hungry can open the fridge and take the food from it. No identity card is needed for taking the food from the fridge and no questions are asked.
The community fridge was the brainchild of Dr Issa Fathima Jasmine who is an orthodontist. According to her, food in high quantity goes to waste in India. “Actually we can feed double our population. But wastage is around 50 per cent. We are only asking people to bring the food that they would otherwise have thrown into the dustbin,” said Jasmin.
During lunch time on Saturday, few children filled the refrigerator with juice, sandwiches and some other goodies. Bananas, pomegranates and oranges were some other items that were kept in the fridge. A worker at a restaurant had put a box full of biryani.
72-year-old rag picker J Kumar took bananas and fruit juice from the cool machine, he said “For an abandoned person like me this is a boon. If I don’t get food for lunch, I’d normally lie down hungry”.
Kamakshi, a 12-year-old student who kept some food in the refrigerator said that many children eat food from garbage. One should not waste food as there are many who do not get any.