Community fridge on City island

The community fridge on City Island.
Photos courtesy of John Doyle

As people are struggling to find food due to COVID-19, community fridges are popping up in low-income places like Mott Haven.

However, middle class neighborhoods like City Island are hurting as well. Recognizing this, City Island resident Ariadna Phillips of the South Bronx Mutual Aid Network helped install the Anchor Fridge on City Island Ave. and Schofield St. in December 2020.

She spoke about the fridge at the Jan. 14 City Island Rising meeting.

“When the pandemic hit it became clear we need to do more to fill in the gaps,” Phillips said.

Phillips, who has been an educator in Mott Haven since 2003, saw the devastation the coronavirus caused. She and her colleagues began doing food giveaways, but soon realized there had to be more of an efficient way to help people.

She noticed some of her friends were launching community fridges in the south Bronx and it dawned on her that she could do the same for City Island.

According to Phillips, the fridge has been a huge success and made a difference.

“We definitely have people that have benefitted from using it,” she explained. “It’s been a wonderful oasis knowing that there are neighbors caring for neighbors.”

Phillips is always looking for volunteers to help restock the fridge and donate food.