AIL talks to: Iqbal Wahhab of Roast

Iqbal Wahhab OBE, owner of Roast, tells us about his new charitable cause

"Usually when I get involved in a social, political or charitable venture people say to me: “Oh, that sounds interesting” by which they really mean they have little idea why I am doing it. But with the latest project I have agreed to be sponsor and chair of, never have I had such superlative responses to my regular e-mail chain letters asking friends and colleagues to become involved. Many have offered to volunteer time on it, some have even pledged money.

Inspired by a similar project in San Francisco, Kitchenette is a social enterprise which will help first timers – especially women from diverse and disadvantaged backgrounds – use their cooking talents and turn them into little food businesses. We will train, mentor and invest in them and ensure they run on sustainable and ethical bases.

Whilst much of the economy shrinks, the street food and food market sectors are growing rapidly. Much of this is driven by rich kids in search of something cool to do – and good luck to them. But if street food and markets are to have a stronger authenticity of purpose they need to be more reflective of the communities they are part of.
Brixton Market pulls this off brilliantly, others not so much.

Ideally Kitchenette will take people on a journey away from benefits, and empower them. If All In London readers would like to be involved or know people who might benefit from this programme, we would love to hear from you. Please visit the website and think about how you could become part of this deliciously exciting venture".

Iqbal Wahhab is the owner of British restaurant Roast in the Floral Hall at Borough Market.
Added on September 23, 2012


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