Hello, my name is __________________ and I volunteer with Chehalis River Mutual Aid Network. We are starting a community free fridge program in town where local artists help us turn fridges and/or pantries into beautiful works of art for installation at local businesses, or individual homes. Our aim is to counter food waste and help combat food insecurity in our community by sharing freely whatever excess food we collect, make, or have donated.
As a result of COVID, the number of Washingtonians who cannot put food on their tables has more than doubled. From 850,000 Washingtonians to 1.6 million (Seattle times) When food insecurity rates go up, it means that people are stretching their dollars to the very limit and are on the brink of economic crisis. Community fridges and pantries help community members in need find access to fresh, frozen, or dry foods they would otherwise have to pay for. It gives us all the security that our community cares for us and our needs. In addition it will serve as a convenient 24/7 drop point for donations for and by our other food access programs such as Food Not Bombs. The Bill Emerson Good Samaritan Food Donation Act (42 USCA § 1791), in most situations, protects from civil and criminal liability those who donate food products to a nonprofit organization for distribution to needy individuals.
We hope that the installations can be outside, freely accessible to all bodies, and open 24/7 to maximize the good they do for our community. We welcome whatever level of participation the hosts desire, but we aim to make this decision easy on small business owners by taking complete responsibility for the fridges. While we ask hosts to donate the space and, if necessary, power – it is our network of community volunteers who are responsible for painting, installing, maintaining, stocking, and cleaning the installations. We have taken our inspiration for this project from Seattle Community Fridges and the Little Free Pantry movement, where we can direct you for a glimpse of what to expect as we do not have any fridges installed yet to give as an example.
Thank you for your valuable time and please get back to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or text 206-530-7806 if this sounds like an opportunity you would be interested in. We are excited to talk specifics about what you would like to see for your installation, and how we can come together to feed hungry people in our community. More information about our group, our other projects, as well as the groups that have inspired this project can be found at our website. https://chehalisrivermutualaid.noblogs.org/community-fridges-and-pantries/