- Deliveroo hosts refugee chefs from charity Welcome Kitchen, giving Londoners the chance to order from a pop-up kitchen for the duration of Refugee Week
- Experienced chefs who have fled from Syria, Libya, Eritrea and Ivory Coast will spend a week using Deliveroo Editions kitchen
- Welcome Kitchen chefs have significant experience catering for charity events and will take the next step to fulfilling their dream of running a restaurant full time in the UK
- Deliveroo will cover the cost of hosting and ordering from Welcome Kitchen - and every penny raised will go to the charity
Deliveroo is hosting chefs from the Welcome Kitchen in their delivery-only Editions kitchen in Crouch End to mark the 20th anniversary of Refugee Week. The chefs are all refugees who have come to the UK having fled conflict or political upheaval in countries including Syria, Yemen, Libya and Eritrea.
Welcome Kitchen - a community project founded and run by refugees - usually caters for community events and one-off private functions, but this is the first time the chefs will be cooking food for delivery. The pop-up kitchen will be hosted in Deliveroo's delivery-only Editions site in Crouch End. Customers in North London will be able to order a range of meals inspired by the cuisine of the chefs' home countries, delivered direct to their door by Deliveroo. Orders will include diverse flavours and spices from across the world, with dishes such as Cheb Jen from Ivory Coast and Tamiya from Yemen on the menu.
A number of the refugees were chefs before they came to the UK, and aspire to establish themselves in the food industry and run their own restaurants so they can bring their distinct cuisines to a wider audience. They have brought their love for food and cooking talents to Britain - Rose Dakuo, who fled Ivory Coast in the late 90s, was a finalist for Cook of the Year in this year's BBC Food & Farming Awards.
Deliveroo is helping these chefs get one step closer to achieving their goal by providing free access to a state-of-the-art fully equipped kitchen, and supporting them with marketing, supplier choice, menu selection, safety training and ingredients. Deliveroo will also cover the cost of delivery for all dishes ordered from Welcome Kitchen meaning customers will not have to pay a delivery fee for the meals. Every penny from each order will go direct to Welcome Kitchen.
Each delivery from Welcome Kitchen will come with a Refugee Week Simple Acts postcard - launched for the 20th anniversary of Refugee Week - which include everyday things everyone can do to stand with refugees and make new connections in their communities.
Commenting, Deliveroo founder and CEO Will Shu said:
'We are really privileged to be supporting Welcome Kitchen and the amazing chefs that make it what it is.
'Refugee Week is the perfect opportunity for Deliveroo to help the chefs involved take the next step in their dream of a permanent restaurant with its own bricks and mortar site.
'We want more Londoners to try these amazing meals so we will be supporting the project's setup costs and covering all the delivery fees so every penny goes back to Welcome.'
Welcome Kitchen chef Aisha Almsellati said:
'I love working with the Welcome Kitchen team, and want to become a well-known chef and have a successful business. Cooking is my passion, and the experience of working in the Deliveroo Editions kitchen is a great opportunity to help me reach my goal.'
Josie Naughton, Help Refugees CEO added:
'It has been an honour to support the important work of Welcome Kitchen over the past two years as they have created a community, using delicious food to help people build new lives in the UK.
'We are delighted about the collaboration between Deliveroo and Welcome Kitchen. It is really exciting that tasty dishes, prepared by a team of talented female refugee chefs, will be available for the people of London throughout Refugee Week'.
Notes to Editors
Welcome Kitchen is a collective of refugee chefs celebrating the cultures and cuisines of Ivory Coast, Libya, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Yemen, Syria, Iraq, Iran, Somalia, Gambia & Palestine. They cater events, host supper clubs and run community projects all over London.
The chefs are connected by all at some point having lived in the Northumberland Park ward of Tottenham, where they accessed or delivered community projects. Some of these projects centred around food - such as making free meals for children or the local homeless community.
Refugee Week, the UK's largest festival celebrating the contribution of refugees, celebrates its 20th anniversary between 18 and 24 June 2018.
For two decades, the festival has brought together people of all backgrounds to celebrate the contributions, creativity and resilience of refugees and the welcome offered to them by British communities.
People are invited to celebrate Refugee Week's 20th anniversary by doing one of 20 Simple Acts, which are simple actions everyone can do to stand with refugees and bring people together in their communities.
Thousands of people are expected to join Refugee Week's 20th anniversary celebrations at hundreds of arts, cultural and educational activities across the UK.
Refugee Week is a partnership project coordinated by Counterpoints Arts. For more information on Refugee Week and Simple Acts, visit the Refugee Week website.
Help Refugees works on the frontline of the refugee crisis in 10 countries across Europe and the Middle East. Founded in 2015 as part of a grassroots movement of volunteers, in just two years they have become one of the most prominent and effective humanitarian aid organisations working directly with refugees.
Responding to urgent needs rapidly, and acting where large NGOs can't or won't, Help Refugees now supports over 80 different projects which have reached over 722,000 people escaping war, violence and persecution.
Welcome Kitchen chefs
Mohamed left Aleppo, Syria in 2012, and stayed in a refugee camp in Turkey for three years with his family before arriving in the UK in 2016. Cooking was a hobby for Mohamed back in Syria, and decided to become a chef when he came to the UK to meet new people, improve his English and be part of the community.
Aisha used to cook for parties, weddings and events in Libya, before coming to the UK in 2012. Cooking is her passion, and she dreams of becoming a successful chef in the UK and running her own business.
Rose has been cooking since the age of 5, having been taught by her parents and aunties in the Ivory Coast. She came to the UK in 1998, and has cooked for her community, local projects and events for 500 people. Rose hopes to open her own restaurant, and was this year a finalist for Cook of the Year in the BBC Food & Farming Awards.
Okba came to the UK from Eritrea in 2008, deciding to leave the country due to the political situation. Okba had a restaurant in Asmara for 10 years before leaving Eritrea, and hopes to own one once again in the UK. Since coming to the UK, Okba has helped cook in community kitchens in Tottenham as well as Welcome Kitchen.
Whegata - Okba's daughter - left Eritrea in 2009 to join her mother in the UK. She learned everything she knows about cooking from her mother, and cooks at her local church and for Welcome Kitchen. She hopes to become a professional chef and to introduce her food to new people and cultures.
Zubayda left Syria in 2014 because of the war. Although she was not a chef before she came to the UK, she has always loved to make food since childhood. Zubayda decided to start cooking as she loves to share her traditional food. She hopes to continue cooking and help grow Welcome Kitchen.
Welcome Kitchen menu for Deliveroo Editions
Cheb Jen - Senegal/Ivory Coast - Famous Senagalise rice cooked with mixed veg & spices
Shisha Shawarma - Syria - Special recipe of BBQ shisha smoked chicken cooked with fried potatoes
Fasolia - Eritrea & Ethiopia - Caramalised green beans & carrots spiced with ginger, turmeric & cumin & served with injera
Zurbiyan - Yemen - A biryani type dish made with lamb, caramelised onions, cardamom pods, planks of cinnamon and other whole masalas flecked
Zgni - Eritrea & Ethiopia - Lamb and tomatoes cooked in a rich sauce cooked with lemon and homemade berbere spice mix, served with injera
Tamiya - Yemen - Called falafel in the Levant, this version is made with black-eyed beans, fresh coriander, garlic, onion & herbs and served with homemade chili sauce
Kabsa - Syria - Fragrant rice cooked with saffron, dried limes, Kabsa mix, sultanas and toasted almonds
Misa Wot - Eritrea & Ethiopia - Lentils slow cooked in homemade Berbere mixed spices, served with injera.
Fatayer - Libya - Homemade flatbreads stuff with spinach and/or feta cheese
Aslose - Libya - Vegetarian couscous cooked with black & chili pepper, turmeric, caraway, with broccoli, carrot, garlic, onions, tomatoes & olive oil sauce topping
Kofta Stew - Syria - Meatballs cooked in a tomato and herbed sauce with nutmeg, Ginger, Allspice, Fenugreek, Cloves, Cinnamon and Black pepper.
Claclo - Ivory Coast - Sweet plantain beignets from the Ivory Coast. They are usually eaten as an afternoon snack and can be savored with a spicy chilli sauce.
Cos lettuce, pomegranate, radish, mint, tomato, lemon, sumac and crispy pita croutons (v)(g)
BBQ aubergines mashed with yogurt, tahini, lemon & olive oil.