Only 3 months have passed from the installation of the Garde-Manger solidaire (food and solidarity Give Box) and it is already a great success.
It is made of three wooden big boxes attached to the gates of the social centre of Charenton. Inside the boxes, there is non perishable food, like tomato and legumes cans, pasta, bottles.
Anyone can come to the solidarity Give Box and deposit or freely take non perishable food without having to give back other food. Shopkeepers can deposit their surplus. The Garde-Manger wants to raise citizens’ awareness of the struggle against food waste and to favour local solidarity.
The Give Boxes have been implemented thanks to the association “Cap ou pas cap” and to the collective of architects “ On a pensé un truc”, together with the social centre of Charenton, and about 30 volunteers.
If it appears clear that the first beneficiaries of these solidarity boxes are the homeless, or people in difficult situations, the objective is to donate to everybody.
As Clément Hélary, in charge of the communication of the association, says, “the idea is to take food from the Garde-Manger when there is such need and otherwise to donate. The solidarity Give Box is aimed at everyone. One day we will all take or donate, for reasons of availability, money, motivations.”
The project has the contribution of the organic food shops Les Nouveaux Robinson that sometimes brings some surplus to the Give Box.
The Garde Manger is a tool that questions us regarding food and it is also a good example of citizen solidarity. It is the result of the commitment of many citizens, and allows the inhabitants of the area to do a first action in the name of solidarity and sharing. One of the consequences of the project is a larger confidence relationship that can be born between residents: the place where these solidarity boxes are put becomes a place of discussion and sharing.