DEKALB COUNTY, Ga - A community refrigerator stocked with free food for anyone in need was vandalized. The fridge is located in the Medlock Park neighborhood in DeKalb County.
The fridge is typically stocked with fresh food, canned goods and beverages for anyone who needs them, at any time, and it's all for free. It's part of the Free99Fridge program.
"All day long, people are coming and going, dropping stuff off, taking what they need," said Meredith Fay.
Fay is a volunteer who stops by a couple of times a week to drop off food.
"There's a lot of food insecurity in Atlanta, a lot of people are struggling," said Fay.
It's a service for those in need. However, early Thursday morning, vandals struck.
"The pantry was open, and food was in the street and in the grass," said Kathryn Dudeck who lives in the community.
In less than half an hour, volunteers had everything cleaned up and restocked, but later in the day it was vandalized again.
Dudeck said earlier this summer there was another incident.
"The gentleman was quite threatening toward me and my vehicle, and was throwing things at my car, denting it," said Dudeck.
Dudeck said it's disheartening, but it won't stop the program because it means so much to others.
She recalls one day when she dropped off some lettuce from her garden and met a man who picked it up.
"He said 'Oh, my goodness, my momma will be so happy to know we're having lettuce tonight.' Just that one little interaction knowing we made a difference for those two people," said Dudeck.
Neighbors said there have been less than a handful of vandalism incidents since the fridge was set up last fall.