Ramadan fridges are taking over the city (in a good way)
Fridges are popping up around the streets of Dubai, here’s how you can help…
Sometimes social media stirs up something pretty special, and this Ramadan it’s seen the flourishing of a Facebook page called Ramadan/Sharing Fridges in the UAE.
The private group (you can just request to join) has drummed up over 19,000 followers in just a week, and it’s seeing fridges full of food emerging all around Dubai to help nourish people post-Iftar in the summer heat.
Here’s a video showing how the concept works:
The concept of a ‘sharing fridge’ isn’t new to the UAE – it’s part of Emirati tradition to share food and water, particularly over the month of Ramadan, but the power of Facebook has taken the initiative to a whole new level.
The idea is simple – a fridge is set up, the location is shared, people donate food and drink to the fridge, and people who need it most are encouraged to help themselves, free of charge (the fridges have posters on them telling people to help themselves, often in English, Urdu and Hindi).
Springs resident and fridge-owner Meghna Bajaj mentioned to What’s On how demand was so high that she found herself having to restock the fridge every 15 minutes or so.
With temperatures reaching upwards of 45 degrees Celsius during the summer months, the fridges are definitely needed in the summer months.
It has mostly been individuals setting up fridges outside of their homes – using power points from their garage or front yard – but companies are now getting on board and places like the OSN building in Media City now have a sharing fridge.
Here’s a location map of the fridges (view the pins in Google Maps here):
What about permissions for setting up the fridges? Well a lot of them are on private properties, otherwise for apartments the building management has to agree.
“Motor City for example has been wonderful,” the organisers of the Facebook group told What’s On. “They have allowed their residents to put up the fridges and also Uptown Mirdiff has been very supportive. When permissions are not obtained we try to involve the local mosque and put the fridge up there. This has also proven to be a success and the Imams welcome this wonderful initiative.”
Companies are getting behind it too, with Al Ain water delivering 200 bottles of water, Fruit4Life delivering 20kg of fruit and veges a day and Hacker Kitchens UAE and Kaiser German Kitchens donating three fridges.
A fridge that’s been set up on Al Wasl Rd near the Canal Construction (right outside Pantry Cafe).
The food is meant for anyone who works in the heat in the local communities – laborers, gardeners and security for instance, or for just whoever needs it the most.
How can you help? Set up a fridge, donate food (remember that things like raw meat don’t work particularly well, anything that can be eaten on the spot or transported safely is a better option) and share the Facebook page.
For a full list of the sharing fridge locations, check out the pinned post on the Ramadan/Sharing Fridges in the UAE Facebook page. There’s a list of over 100 fridges and growing, with more popping up each day from Barsha to Sharjah.