Refugee Chefs to Cook in Restaurants in Paris

Cultural Diplomacy at Work in Paris

June 10th, 2016

Ten Parisian restaurants will open their kitchens to refugee chefs from Syria and Sri Lanka as part of the new festival Food Sweet Food. The festival will take place in Paris from the 17th to the 21st of June. 

The refugee food festival is a culinary event organized on the international day for refugees in the hope that it will change people's perception of refugees. It will remind people that behind the refugee crisis there are men and women who have personal lives, cultural ties and job potential.

This festival is coordinated by the UNHCR, the UN organization for refugees, and the social company Les Cuistots migrateurs. The co-founder, Louis Martin, explained to the AFP 'We tend to forget that these people come to France with skills, expertise and cultural patrimony, particularly in cooking, which must be valued to help them integrate into French society'.

Among the restaurants which will participate in the festival are the 'Freegan Pony', a restaurant from the 19th district which uses the unsold stocks of the Rungis market, the 'l'Ami Jean' restaurant and 'La Poulette'.

The mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo, announced a few day ago that Paris will open a refugee camp in the city. This act will demonstrate the goodwill of the capital towards the refugees and will hopefully assist in integrating these new people into French society. The festival project will demonstrate how cooking can bring people together in cooperation and mutual understanding.


Cultural Diplomacy News
Julie Essertel, CD News