The Community Dinner…

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They were always being told “business is business”.  There’s generosity and community and relationship – and then there’s business.  But they suspected otherwise.  What if in the soup pot, the flavours infuse and the small generous gesture engenders something much greater; something wonderful…

They thought, let’s open the doors in the evening, once a month.  Let’s make a big pot of minestrone and let’s make it on the house – no charge; no “business is business” – and, soon enough, this attracted a pumpkin and ginger soup with coriander pesto, then a dahl, then cakes and bread and music and singing and all sorts of people rubbing shoulders, sporting a niggling feeling of goodwill…

Until, in early December, we found ourselves woven into the potent story of a beautiful woman with a strong voice and an iron will.  Baharej, fearing for her life and fleeing her home in Iran, made for the supposed safety of our Australian shores.  She was held in detention centres on Christmas Island and in Brisbane for 12 months, before being sent to Australia as an asylum seeker.  It was our privilege to bear witness to her story.

For many months now, through the generous donations of people sharing in these community dinners, nearly $4,000 have been raised.  This money has gone towards supporting the work of the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre, through programs offering material aid, health, legal, counseling and casework support as well as a foodbank.

 

Thank-you to all who have played a part in this humble adventure…

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Photos by http://www.heleneathanasiadis.com/

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