In the spirit of sharing and caring for those in need, a brilliant initiative has been set up in Dubai to ensure the city’s laborers have access to food and drink to break their fast this Ramadan. A few years ago, it started out by a lady called Sumayyah Sayed, a young Australian mother of two, who stocked one fridge with water and snacks for Iftar. This grew rapidly to a Facebook group with more than 24,000 members all over the United Arab Emirates, 70 fridges already open and more popping up every day!
By putting fridges in communities, outside homes in garages, a sense of community is created, some hungry bellies are filled and a few eyes opened. Families have been donating everything from fruit (fresh or dried) to juices, water, laban or biscuits, with fridges often powered by electricity from their own homes. Walking around the neighborhood to get some pictures for this post, I realized how little interaction I have had with the people who keep our community so beautiful. A gesture that seems so small to us can make a huge difference in the life of someone else.
Simple signs in different languages invite gardeners, security staff, construction workers and other hungry men whom work outdoors in temperatures exceeding 40 degrees and are unable to go home for Iftar due to work commitments, to take some food or a drink.
This year it’s even more structured thanks to bigger organizations such as Emirates Red Crescent and Open Arms UAE getting involved.
Have you heard of this initiative? Would you like to participate? Here is what you can do:
Donate: Check out the map for locations of the fridges.
When shopping, add extra drinks, pieces of fruit or packets of arabic bread to your cart. It’s a fantastic way to get the whole family involved. Last year my younger son encouraged us as a family to drive by the fridge in our community numerous times a week to stock it up with fresh fruit and laban. He never forgot, not a single time! The success of the initiative relies so much on individual donations.
Create: Start your own Ramadan fridge! Contact the admin on the Facebook page to get your location listed and start stocking up!
Sponsor: Do you work for a company that could help out with suitable products? Contact the admin on the Facebook page to get involved.
Beyond feeding people, this initiative hopes to promote a sense of community and bring us all closer together, and that’s really what Ramadan is all about. Giving to others gives us pleasure. It makes us happier people which in turn leads us to give more which makes us even happier and ... well, you get the picture.
Now, it makes me wonder....why not extend this through the entire year? Would the fridges be full at the beginning and end of each day ? What do you think?
Ramadan Kareem 🌙