One of five million people forced to flee their homes in Syria because of the civil war, Chef Imad Alarnab came to the UK with hopes to restart his business after losing his restaurants to warfare in Damascus. His pop up café called the Syrian Kitchen has just opened in Bethnal Green, London, this month.
Chef Alarnab wants to bring people joy through cooking and introduce the youth of London to favourites like fattoush and tabakh rohoo. He is also involved with Cook For Syria, an initiative by London based blogger Clerkenwell Boy and SUITCASE magazine meant to raise money for UNICEF's Syria Relief fund. The campaign aims to help those affected by the devastation of the war through social media, recipe sharing and cooking. It encourages everyone from top UK chefs to people at home to participate and make contributions. Restaurants, cafés, bake sales, donated recipes and social media posts together have already raised £130,000. The movement has been recognized globally and has now also launched in Australia.
Ten per cent of the ticket sales from Alarnab's pop up will contribute to Cook for Syria.