Local Family Dinner is a sometimes weekly, sometimes monthly social enterprise dinner held at Parliament on King, a cosy little cafe on the south end of King Street, Newtown. The dinners are always hearty, tasty vegan-friendly meals cooked and hosted lovingly by asylum seekers and refugees, and I was assigned by Broadsheet about a year ago to shoot a story on them. Having conceived a similar idea back in my uni days and feeling super bummed about this country’s beyond-shitty treatment of refugees and asylum seekers, I was incredibly inspired by what owners Ravi and Della have done and decided I wanted to contribute my support.
I’ve been going back regularly ever since to document their events and hang out with my new friends that make Local Family Dinner so special. I can only hope that other hospitality businesses or indeed anyone with the ability will follow suit, and as for me, I’d really love to turn these images into a book one day. For now, I’ve put together a little selection of images that hopefully give you an idea of what these guys are all about.
To see the Broadsheet article, click here.
To find out more about Parliament on King, head over to their Facebook page and website. They’re always looking for volunteers, so feel free to get in touch if you’d like to become a part of Local Family Dinner.
The ASRC in Melbourne are the go-to guys in Australia for asylum seeker and refugee resources, and they’re holding an info night on 28 Jan and 4 Feb for anyone who wants to volunteer – they need your help because 98% of legal funding has been cut by the Australian government, with 24,000 individuals currently in limbo.
While you’re at it, if you’ve become a bit desensitised to the Western media’s extensive (but well-meaning) coverage of the crisis, have a look at these moving images of the situation, as seen through the eyes of Iraqi refugees.
And finally, if you’ve been living under a rock/are not familiar with the treatment of our fellow human beings in Australia, check out the the Guardian’s dedicated page to the ongoing issue.