The new Lake Country Community Fridge has officially opened at the Winfield United Church on Woodsdale Road. (Facebook photo)

The new Lake Country Community Fridge has officially opened at the Winfield United Church on Woodsdale Road. (Facebook photo)

Community fridge opens in Lake Country

Fridge found at Winfield United Church; judgment-free zone

The Lake Country Community Fridge formed to provide safe, 24/7 access to free food for those in the community who needed it.

Their vision became reality Saturday, Oct. 9, when the fridge located at the Winfield UInited Church on the west-facing side of the building officially opened.

“The main goal of the fridge is to help those facing nutritional insecurity by providing easy, 24/7 access to free, fresh and nutritious food,” wrote Lake Country Community Fridge on its Facebook page. “The idea is ‘Take what you need, leave what you can.’ Those that are in need of nutritious food can help themselves, and members of the community are welcome to contribute what they’re able.”

The Lake Country Community Fridge is a 100 per cent community- and volunteer-run structure containing a fridge/freezer and dry goods area that is open all of the time.

Strong support is already being shown for the initiative.

“Since we’re expecting a large amount of donations when we first launch, we request that donations be spaced out,” said the group.

Donations the Lake Country Community Fridge CAN accept include:

• Fresh fruit and vegetables;

• Fresh eggs;

• Dairy products;

• Bread and pastries;

• Canned goods;

• Dry goods (pasta, rice, baking needs, etc.);

• Hygiene items (diapers, toothpaste, tampons, pads, etc.);

• Beverages (juice, juice boxes, pop, non-alcoholic drinks, etc.);

• Frozen food (pizza, microwave dinners, fruit/vegetables, etc.);

• Snacks (granola bars, crackers, etc.);

• Pre-made food (prepared by a licenced commercial kitchen);

• Pet food.

The community fridge CANNOT accept:

• Opened, used or half-eaten food;

• Expired food;

• Dented cans;

• Mouldy items;

• Raw meat or seafood;

• Alcohol;

• Leftovers and pre-made home meals (The community fridge can ONLY accept pre-made food from a licenced commercial kitchen);

• Clothing and household items (feel free to donate to the Winfield United Church Thrift Store during open hours).

The Lake Country Community Fridge has a note to those who might feel anxious about using the refrigerator.

“Those in our community facing food insecurity are encouraged to start using the fridge. This is a judgement-free zone.”

Volunteers do fridge check, ie, checking the contents, tidying up the area, sanitizing handles. A checklist, sanitizing and cleaning supplies will be at the ridge.