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‘Friendly Fridges’ with Free Food are Feeding Struggling NYC Residents

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Thousands of New Yorkers are out of work and struggling with food insecurity, but asking for help can be stigmatizing. 

Knowing this, neighbors around the city are teaming up with businesses to stock “friendly fridges” with free food up for grabs, no questions asked.

“I’ve been in the situation of not having money to buy food. That’s tough, but you don’t want to ask for help,” Laura Alvarez told Insider. “Having something for people to access without having to ask for it is so important. So many people have come by and take a few things or leave things.”

Alvarez, an artist and co-founder of BxArts Factory, has painted three “friendly fridges” in the Bronx. Residents around the city — starting in Brooklyn — have begun buying and filling refrigerators that are placed on city streets for those in need.