Outside the Glassmanor Community Center in Oxon Hill, Maryland, sits an oasis in the middle of a five-mile food desert.
A Feed the Fridge community refrigerator feeds the needs of hungry Prince George’s County residents. The fridge is the second to open in the county and is among 10 installed in the D.C. area.
It’s stocked every day with ready-to-eat meals for anyone in need of food — no strings attached.
“To be able to come here, this is wonderful. This is a blessing, and it’s going to help everybody,” resident Tracie Freeman said.
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“This serves kids after school, this serves parents that want to get their kids a school lunch, and it serves parents, in a dignified way,” Feed the Fridge founder Mark Bucher said.
Bucher, the co-founder of the Medium Rare restaurants, wanted to fill the food gap for seniors and school kids during the height of the pandemic. He said he stepped into a big hunger situation in the area and couldn’t step out.
“Our goal is to solve [hunger] — not just provide meals but really eradicate it,” he said.
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The food not only fills stomachs; it helps restaurants in this community stay afloat.
“We buy meals every day from local restaurants to keep the fabric of your community alive,” Bucher said.
Starting Wednesday, the fridge will stock hard-to-find baby formula.
"We've leaned on our partners in the medical community, our partners in the trucking community and friends that we have out-of-state and out-of-region that are literally buying the baby formula and shipping it to us," Bucher told News4.
Bucher told our news partners at WTOP that tamper-proof bottles of the formula would be placed in fridge, "ready to drink."
“It’s there for the taking for the next few weeks until the supply chain solves out,” he said.
Feed the Fridge now has 10 pickup sites across the D.C. area. Here's a map of the locations.
One in seven people in Prince George’s County is coping with food insecurity.
How to Apply for SNAP and WIC in Maryland
If you need help getting food, resources are available. Go here for info on how to apply in Maryland to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), and here for info on how to apply for WIC, which helps women, infants and children.