Community Refrigerator Open to All in Oak Cliff

The People's Fridge is a place where people who need food can get it, and those who have food can donate it

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The People's Fridge sits outside the Pan African Connection in Oak Cliff. Like a community library where people can take and donate books, the community refrigerator is where those who need food can take some, and those who have food can leave some.

"When I saw the community fridge on Twitter for the first time, I was like, wow! This is something I want to be a part of," The People's Fridge Lead Organizer Jasmine Coleman said. "I found out there was a huge community of people who have started community fridges in their own cities, for instance in New York they have about 50 fridges throughout the city."

The concept has been growing in popularity since the pandemic started.

"During COVID right now you have people who are, for the first time, asking themselves 'OK, am I going to pay my mortgage, or am I going to feed my family'," Coleman said.

Access to food is not a new problem. The USDA defines an urban food desert as a place where a grocery store is more than a mile away. In Dallas, many of them are south of downtown.

"I saw the need so I just wanted to go ahead and get the ball rolling so we could bring this resource to the Dallas area," Coleman said. "Our main mission is to just get people to think about their community differently and know that they can depend on other people. They don't have to go through hard times alone."

There are plans to put another community refrigerator in DeSoto on October 3.

The People's Fridge operates on $250/week in donations to stock the refrigerator. It is located at 4466 S. Marsalis Ave., Dallas. The hours are from 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Sunday.

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