In May 2021, Eugene resident Jayme Bradshaw lived under Washington-Jefferson Street in the Whiteaker neighborhood in Eugene. She lived in a tent, located on the eastmost side of the strip of park, right across the street from a free community fridge.
Just a short walk away from Washington-Jefferson Park, the fridge was easily accessible to Bradshaw and other nearby residents. The fridge, painted an orange-pink hue with multicolored rainbow squiggles, had “free food” and “comida gratis” painted in big white letters on the front. Inside, the fridge contained perishable food and other necessities free for the taking.
Bradshaw is still currently affected by food insecurity. While she primarily uses food stamps to pay for food, Bradshaw also used the free community fridge across from her camp once or twice a week to grab things like hotdogs, pizzas and salads. But now the fridge is gone.
A free food pantry stands on the corner of West 4th and Madison street. The pantry is one of many free pantries around Eugene, each of which have a different design painted on it, that offer free food to Eugene residents.
Bradshaw has nerve damage, so it’s important for her to be close to food resources.