Can you smell what the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre is cooking?
The ASRC Catering team claimed an award at the Social Enterprise Awards last Wednesday, taking home the award for the best business with less than 20 full-time employees.
The team were one of 26 finalists in eight categories selected by an independent panel, and will now attend an international social enterprise event in New Zealand next year.
ASRC Catering was founded in 2005 to provide training and employment for people seeking asylum, and has since catered for more than 1000 events.
Profits from the business going back to the ASRC, with more than $750,000 reinvested in the past five years.
ASRC Catering also won the The Age Good Food Guide ‘Food for Good’ award earlier this year.
Caroline Sturzaker, the manager of ASRC Catering since 2006, said the enterprise had always aimed to provide a professional catering service which was influenced by the unique global perspective of the people seeking asylum who worked there.
Food can bond cultures. Traditionally food has been used to help bridge the cultural divides between peoples and countries she said.
“History has shown that Australians are ready to embrace many and varied cuisines and are constantly on the lookout for the next trend.
If an asylum seeker is standing in your lounge room and serving you something you have never tasted before that can start a conversation.
The Social Enterprise Awards were supported by Social Traders. David Brookes, the Social Traders managing director, said the winners often showed rare initiative.
“Increasingly we’re seeing social enterprises playing prominent roles in providing employment and training opportunities for those most marginalised in society, as well as providing community solutions where the market has failed.
“These winners represent the innovative nature of social enterprise at finding new ways to solve old problems.”
Leave a reply →
Head chef, Cathy, volunteer, Ben and Catering program manager, Caroline at the SEA