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McDonald’s Restaurant Gets Converted Into A Food Bank To Feed The Hungry
By Mikelle Leow, 28 Jun 2021
Image via La Société Citoyenne Immobilière
One McDonald’s location in Marseille, France has adopted a cashless system—in that it doesn’t take in any payment from diners, as L'Après M is a food bank.
In a former life, the McDonald’s outlet opened in 1992 in a poverty-hit neighborhood of a predominantly Muslim community. When it shut down in 2018, it left many out of income or job opportunities. An organizer of the food bank told VICE that the other alternative to find work in the neighborhood was a local hypermarket.
To protest the restaurant’s closure, manager Kamel Guemari—who was employed at the McDonald’s at 16 years old and had worked there for the next two decades—covered himself in gasoline and locked himself in, threatening to set himself on fire, according to Forbes. More employees would join him over the weeks.
They took up an even more meaningful approach when the pandemic hit. The McDonald’s location was rebranded to “L’Après M” (The After M) and transformed into a food bank to nourish residents.
Farmers donated fruits and vegetables, shops sent in food, while locals offered money to finance the campaign. By the fifth week of its opening, L’Après M had already served at least 100,000 people.
This month, the Marseille government offered to buy the building so it will no longer have to serve people illegally, the Washington Post reports. Now, the food bank offers more than food parcels—it also hosts events associated with its altruistic initiative, says Insider.
[via Insider, images via La Société Citoyenne Immobilière]
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