Banbury community fridge founder honoured by Theresa May

Yasmin Kaduji with the Banbury Community Fridge at Banbury Madni Masjid. NNL-181023-154328009
Yasmin Kaduji with the Banbury Community Fridge at Banbury Madni Masjid. NNL-181023-154328009

The woman who founded a project giving away surplus food from supermarkets for free to anyone who needs it in Banbury has been honoured by Theresa May.

Yasmin Kaduji was named as a Points of Light Award by the Prime Minister on Tuesday (January 15) for her work in setting up the Banbury Community Fridge Project.

Yasmin, who works part-time for Banbury Chamber of Commerce, said she was not expecting the recognition but was very grateful to Mrs May and everyone who has helped her.

“I founded the Banbury Community Fridge after being inspired by Islam’s teachings to take care of our neighbours.

“It has been a challenging project, but thanks to the support of my friends, family, local supermarkets, kind strangers and Banbury Madni Masjid for providing a space for this service.

“The Banbury Community Fridge is reducing food waste, supporting families and reintroducing a sense of community.

“‘He who eats to satisfaction while his neighbour is hungry is not a believer,’ – Prophet Muhammed (peace be upon them).”

Yasmin set up the fridge after a year of taking food that would otherwise go to landfill from supermarkets and delivering them to people in the town.

The fridge at Banbury Mosque gave the project a hub and has been inundated with people of all backgrounds who are helping to reduce waste.

In a personal letter to Yasmin, Mrs May said: “Your creation of the community fridge in Banbury shows tremendous innovation and is testament to your dedication to the local community.

“You should be very proud of your commitment to grow this project into something which positively benefits so many people. I wish you well as you continue to further your work.”

Yasmin also coordinates a number of inter-faith events at the mosque, including holiday play schemes, a weekly community lunch and she is currently setting up a mother and baby group.

She has been invited to Parliament in February to receive her award and watch Prime Minister’s Questions as a guest of Mrs May.

Banbury MP Victoria Prentis said: “I was thrilled to hear that Yasmin’s hard work for the local community has been recognised with a Points of Light Award.

“She has worked on a range of projects in Banbury, including the Community Fridge which opened last year and is an extremely worthwhile initiative.

“I am very grateful for her hard work and look forward to welcoming her to Westminster at some point soon to celebrate her achievement.”

Every weekday the Prime Minister recognises an inspirational volunteer with the Point of Light award.

Yasmin said she has been amazed by the popularity of the fridge, which is now regularly running out of food.

So if any other supermarkets want to get involved, they are welcome to get in touch with her by emailing yasminkad@yahoo.co.uk