Warm reception for charity initiative
An initiative to provide fridges across Dubai for people to leave food for workers during Ramadan has become such a success that it will be kept on all year round.
The concept of a sharing fridge has been around for quite some time, said Australian expat Sumayyah Sayed, 29, who started the initiative by setting up a fridge outside her villa in the Meadows last week. The project now has 40 fridges across Dubai.
“It is a simple concept. The fridge is open for residents to come and drop food items for workers who work outdoors to come and refresh themselves with the items inside,” she said.
After Sayed asked family and friends to drop food items into the fridge, the word spread and the Facebook group Ramadan/Sharing Fridges in the UAE now has more than 8,000 members working together to set up new fridges. By Mahak Mannan
“Midday and 4pm are the peak hours when we see a lot of workers come to grab their favourite snacks,” said Sayed, who confirmed that the successful project will continue throughout the year.
Belgian-Moroccan expat Nadia Sarie, 43, an organiser and contributor, said some fridges need to be filled up to eight times a day.
“When a fridge gets empty, the fridge managers post on the group and within an hour, it is stacked up again and one fridge serves up to 180 workers per day,” she said.
“It is fantastic how the whole community is trying to contribute in their own way.
“One has voluntarily created a map on Google Maps with location pins of the fridges, another is printing flyers and handing them out in different languages to workers with the location details.
“It is not the effort of a single person, everyone is contributing.
“Twenty ladies in Mirdiff put in Dhs15 each to facilitate the transport of one of the fridges there.
“People are buying fridges, donating extra ones at home or ones they are discarding.”
NOTE OF THANKS
French expat Sophie Desplaces, 41, who is a quality auditor, set up a sharing fridge outside her villa in The Springs and was overjoyed when one of the workers left her a thank you note.
“The first fridge by Sumayyah was in The Meadows which would be far for my gardener and workers to go to, so I decided to get a fridge off Dubizzle and set it up outside my house,” she said. “Workers come regularly and people are dropping food around 10 times a day in my fridge and one worker also left a thank you note.”