Is your refrigerator running? Because I think I may have seen it on Western Avenue.
Okay. I admit, that joke works better in person. Jokes aside, did you know there’s a free community fridge on Western Avenue? Yes, a public refrigerator that you can donate to, or take from, right on the street.
This street fridge was set up by LA Community Fridges, a mutual aid organization that finds ways for the community to care for itself. In this case, it’s encouraging people to drop off prepared and packaged meals and snacks for anyone in need.
There are over 15 community fridges in Los Angeles County. And four of those fridges are in South Los Angeles. There’s one on Historic South Central; Another one in the Broadway-Manchester neighborhood; a vibrant one in Leimert Park; and the one I visited on Western Avenue and 56th Street in Vermont Square.
Fridges can be empty or full. You won’t really know much about what you’re going to get until you get there. On my visit this past President’s Day, the refrigerator was a bit on the empty side, beside some nearby can goods, and a few other staples that I brought. But there were some frozen treats someone could snag. And a few hours later, a volunteer checked in and restocked the fridge.
You can visit the LA Community Fridge website to find a community fridge near you. Now, just like at home, not all fridges are open 24 hours a day. So double check the map before you make a drop off.
If you’re interested in learning more about this? I’ve left all the links in the description box below. And, if you want to do more than drop off some packaged meals, visit the LA Community Fridges’ FAQ page, where you can learn how to be an active volunteer or how to even start a community fridge near you.