A restaurant in Kochi, India has recently made waves around the world for its ingenious solution to solving hunger, cutting down waste and giving back to its community.
Pappadavada, owned by Minu Pauline, is providing countless people in need with meals by leaving a working refrigerator outside of the restaurant so that patrons can leave their leftovers for those who cannot afford food. Pauline came up with this amazingly kind gesture after she witnessed a homeless woman searching through the garbage for food one night. In an interview with the Huffington Post, Pauline said she was deeply moved by that experience, and clearly bothered that the woman “had been sleeping and was woken up by her hunger, so she had to go in search of food instead of sleeping.”
Pauline was especially frustrated by the woman’s unfortunate situation because she knew her restaurant had tons of leftover food that had been thrown away on that particular night – which could have easily been a meal for that woman and many more. Inspired to make a change, Pauline took action and installed an unlocked, public refrigerator right in front of Pappadavada, where she leaves any leftover food that her restaurant has at the end of the day, alongside any meals her patrons donate. Pauline only asks that donors place the date on food wrappers so that anyone taking food out will know how long it’s been there. This refrigerator is always open, 24/7, and is available to anyone with no questions asked.
The refrigerator has been tremendously successful since its installation on March 23, and the community has been more than happy to rally around the restaurant to help. Pauline says that her patrons and others donate their food on a regular basis, and her restaurant alone accounts for about 75 to 80 portions per day – which is a great thing, because the public fridge has been so successful that it needs constant restocking. The donated food is always being put to good use.
Pauline couldn’t be happier with how the public refrigerator has worked out. She said:
“Money is yours, but resources belong to society. That’s the message I want to send out. If you’re wasting your money, it’s your money, but you’re wasting the society’s resources.”
You can watch the video below to see Pappadavada’s fridge in action:
Featured image via Facebook: Pappadavada