Feeding the Homeless, Emma

Feeding the homeless – We’ve found Geelong’s answer to Melbourne’s Little Soup Kitchen. It’s Asian Essence, right in the middle of town at 146 Moorabool St. Here they feed the homeless every Saturday evening from 5pm – 8pm. PLEASE SHARE. After sampling a scrumptious, cheap Halal meal, in this warm, friendly place, I caught up with Emma (pictured) and her friend Hanim.

Asian Essence Emma

‘As Muslims, we are encouraged to do charity work and good deeds. Charity is a major teaching of Islam, it is the Third Pillar. Being charitable and providing for the needy are important features of the Muslim character.

‘During Ramadan is the time to do twice as much good. Ramadan is the ninth month of the Muslim year from May 16 – June 14 where strict fasting is observed from dawn to sunset. The philosophy behind this is that the more you give, the more you get in return.

‘We have 15 – 20 homeless people who pick up a prepacked meal on Saturday evenings. They’re very nice people who chat. They all know me by name and call ‘Hi Emma’ whenever they walk past.

Asian Essence food

‘They are really nice genuine people who are doing it tough and need our help. ‘How do you know they are homeless?’ is the question that gets asked most by our customers. Well they don’t have a card or proof but we don’t need that. We are doing this sincerely, we trust them and they trust us.

‘My husband is the chef and he cooks up fried rice for the packs. Close relatives and friends sometimes pitch in dessert as they too want to help the homeless.

‘We moved to Geelong from Malaysia 4 years ago and are pleased to call it home. I’ve been working in the restaurant since it opened 3 years ago. I’m returning to Malaysia to visit family mid June for a couple of months but Asian Essence’s Feed the Homeless project will continue while I’m away.

Thanks also to the owners of Asian Essence, Noredah and husband Hasbi.

http://asianessence-geelong.com.au/ Please help their campaign by eating at their restaurant. There are 12 delicious curries to choose from including lots of vegetarian options, fresh prata bread and rice. Meal combinations are very reasonable at around $10. Say hi to Emma and help feed the homeless while you are at it.

Watch out for Thursday’s story about cafes in our region that offer ‘suspended coffee’ = coffee for those in genuine need. Please comment if you know of any.

Story and photos: Jacqui Bennett. Follow us on Instagram, Twitter and facebook. Catch up on all our stories on our website.