Organizing social kitchens in municipalities

In a nutshell

This tool provides guidelines for organising social kitchens and a social fridge network. The tool is useful in situations where many people need access to cooking and food storage facilities, for example in situations of refugees or natural disasters. The tool could also provide inspiration for creating social meeting points e.g. in rural areas. The aim of the initiative is to connect the actions of local governments, NGOs and businesses in order to respond to crises touching vulnerable social groups (for example elderly, homeless, and refugees) by the developing and running of a city's social kitchen and a social fridge network.

Necessary Steps

  • Find a place for a social kitchen in the municipal housing resources
  • Renovate the kitchen – by a municipal entity, with the assistance of local citizens (volunteers);
    Look for sponsors and donors to equip the social kitchen;
  • Transfer surplus food from the city's canteens (including school canteens) to social kitchens or directly to people in need (through NGOs and volunteers);
  • Use reusable containers (for example, glass jars collected by public officers and reusable boxes for takeaway meals);
  • Create a social fridge network - eatery – giving a 24 hours a day access to everyone to shared storage facilities (accompanied by a social campaign aimed at encouraging citizens to share food with people in need); social fridges are used by people in crisis while the social kitchen is closed;
  • Obtain food from entrepreneurs (including social economy entities) and food banks (through NGOS), then prepare healthy meals for residents in crisis in the social kitchen with their involvement;
    Freeze the surplus food;
  • Encourage citizens to use the social kitchen - you can bring your own products or exchange a part of it for some available on-site.

More Issues To Consider

  • The social kitchen and the fridge network can be extended with culinary workshops or shared cultivation of vegetables and herbs.
  • Network with other initiatives working in a similar field.

Further Information

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