Tayybeh, a social enterprise that employs newcomer Syrian women chefs, delivered meals to vulnerable communities during the pandemic, including refugees, low-income individuals, seniors, and members of the Indigenous community.
When COVID-19 first struck and shuttered stores and services, food security was top of mind for Krystal Renschler. “Longstanding support systems in the community were disrupted overnight,” explains the Vancity Community Investment Portfolio Manager. “We had to act quickly to get resources into the hands of community leaders as fast as possible so they could be responsive to immediate needs. Feeding people was at the top of that list, and the best thing we could do was provide financial support to those who had the capacity and connections to get meals to those who needed them.”
One of the organizations with the heart to help and the skills to feed a large group of people was Vancity business member Tayybeh. This full-service catering social enterprise employs newcomer Syrian women chefs with no previous formal work experience. With a $50,000 grant from Vancity, Tayybeh developed a meal delivery service for vulnerable communities, including refugees, low-income individuals, seniors, and members of the Indigenous community in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. As a result, Tayybeh delivered 5,000 meals to those in need over the course of four months at the height of the pandemic.