A ‘behind the scenes’ interview with volunteer Sulafa Babiker

Community Fridge Volunteers standing in front of new freezer full of food for New Scots - refugees, asylum seekers and migrants in Edinburgh.

The Welcoming’s Community Fridge is a direct response to the cost of living crisis our local community is currently experiencing. In 2020, the Edinburgh Poverty Commission estimated that 30,000 adults in Edinburgh needed food support, a number that is rising. In April 2022, 13.8% of all UK households were in ‘food stress’.

We spoke to Sulafa Babiker, one of our Community Fridge volunteers, to chat about her first-hand experience of this essential service for New Scots (refugees, asylum seekers and migrants) in Edinburgh.

What impact do you think the Community Fridge service has on the local community?

The concept of a community fridge serves as a vital lifeline for individuals in need, offering them access to essential food items free of charge. The Welcoming fridges are stocked with a diverse array of fruits, vegetables, groceries, and baked goods, providing invaluable assistance, particularly during times of economic hardship

In the face of financial challenges, the availability of nutritious food through the Community Fridge helps alleviate the burden of food insecurity for countless individuals and families.

Furthermore, by redistributing surplus food that would otherwise go to waste, the Community Fridge plays a crucial role in reducing food wastage and promoting sustainability, making it a cornerstone of compassionate community support systems.

Is the necessity of a community fridge worrying for you?

I wholeheartedly support the idea of a community fridge as it serves as a monumental source of support for all its participants. The Community Fridge significantly reduces food wastage and helps alleviate poverty by providing access to nutritious food for those in need. Moreover, it allows the organisation to extend meaningful assistance to community members. It’s a collaborative environment where everyone can contribute to and benefit from the collective effort to combat hunger and promote sustainability.

Finally, what is the most positive aspect of volunteering for The Welcoming?

The positive aspect of volunteering at The Welcoming is the profound effect on my mood, uplifting it for the better. This sense of welcome has made me feel supported and appreciated, giving me a sense of belonging and acceptance. I am enriched by new experiences and interactions with individuals from diverse nationalities each week.

The Welcoming would like to take this opportunity to thank our volunteers for their dedication, hard work, and compassion, which helps strengthen the New Scots community in Edinburgh! Find out more about volunteering opportunities here.

Volunteers’ Week: Community Fridge Volunteer
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