Action Hunger is a charity of the homeless and they have just launched a vending machine for the people who sleep on the city streets. This machine provides round the clock access to food and clothing and is free to use for the people. It took two years to make the machine and it is finally operating as a part of a month-long trial at a shopping center in Nottingham, UK.
There was no accurate headcount available for the people who have taken to the streets for their survival but another charity for the homeless, Crisis says that according to the government street counts and estimates, “latest figures showed that 4,134 people slept rough across England on any given night in 2016.”
There are a number of organizations available that provide shelter and assistance to the homeless but they are only functional in the daytime working hours. This vending machine from Action Hunger aims to overcome that by providing the essentials to those in need 24/7.
The machine has a stockpile of fruits, snacks, sandwiches, sanitary products, and small items of clothing. All of these items are free for the homeless and they can access it via a key card system. A report from The Guardian states that the fresh food is being supplied by redistribution organizations whereas other items are being bought through donations.
The vending machine is located at the Sussex Street entrance of the Broadmarsh shopping center in Nottingham, but key cards will be issued to locals through its partner, The Friary advice center in West Bridgford. Each key card will allow the homeless users up to three items per day. This limit was set by Action Hunger to ensure that the people don’t start depending too heavily on these vending machines.
This is a really nice and thoughtful initiative by the charity and there are further plans to set up similar vending machines in Manchester as well.