Sankara’s Year in Review – 2019

As we move forward into the second month of 2020, let’s take a look back to 2019. With the new year (and new decade) ahead of us, we wanted to compile some of our most memorable moments from last year.

Last year was filled with engaging multicultural experiences and, of course, plenty of world foods.  We met globetrotters, shared travel stories, dined with artists, cooked with you & even launched our Grocery Marketplace. It was a year of growth. We loved creating experiences to build cross-cultural empathy in the community. Of course, our Marketplace wouldn’t exist without our adventure-seeking clients (that’s you) and certainly not without our partner vendors.

Vendors: we’re tremendously honoured to work with you

This year we continued to work with a talented group of local partner chefs in Saint John and Fredericton who love to share their culture through their cuisine. The chefs host their mouth-watering menus on Sankara free of charge. This makes it easier for Chefs like Tutu, who don’t yet have their own brick-and-mortar restaurant, to serve their clients the foods they love by using local licensed kitchens.

From top left to bottom right: Chef Ehab, A. Kim & Chef Kim, Chef Hia and Chef Tutu

Lunch & Learns – Sharing Food & Discussion

Last year we loved hosting free pop-up lunch & learns. These events provide an experiential opportunity to learn about our local partner chefs and sample a variety of multicultural cuisines. We learned about the importance of creating space for you to learn about us.  During the event, we shared our company mission and some stories. It was wonderful being present to answer questions & learn more about our clients. Contact us if you would like to book a lunch & learn.

Cuisines from around the globe collaborating on one plate

Memorable Events of 2019

International Culture Fest: Fostering Empathy by Sharing Culture

A meeting of the minds over shared Arabic coffee

International Culture Fest featured artisans, performers and food vendors from the far reaches of the world. Food vendors served food from Ghana, Egypt, Cuba, Nigeria and Madagascar. Artisans sold handmade African clothes, Syrian decorative boxes, knit fashion and more. The entertainment included Bollywood Dance Inc., West African dance, Palestinian dance and local Highland Dance. One artist provided free Henna, while another brewed Arabic coffee to cross-cultural conversation.

Culture Fest was a great opportunity to launch our new cultural Grocery Marketplace

Sankara Shares: An Evening for Travel Storytelling

As part of our mission to build empathy across cultures we decided to launch a free travel storytelling series: Sankara Shares. At our first event the venue was packed and it really felt like we were sharing stories in a warm, familiar living room. Thanks to the six courageous storytellers who shared their lived travel stories at this event. We learned about the vast array of villages in Seoul Korea, the diverse regions of Vietnam, and the beauty of Sri Lanka. Together, we vicariously explored, learned, and laughed during an evening filled with inspiring stories. 

There were 50 people who attended our first Sankara Shares and we learned that we need MORE seating

Sankara Cooking Class: Learn Ethiopian Cuisine with Chef Tutu

Chef Tutu is one of very few Ethiopian Chefs in New Brunswick and she shared her expertise with guests in our first ever Sankara Cooking Class in November 2019. Participants learned how to make a three part authentic vegan Ethiopian meal. Following the Ethiopian food etiquette, we ate our delicious meal by hand. We all sipped a strong Ethiopian coffee after the coffee ceremony was complete.

Guests learning how to make Mesir Wat, a traditional Ethiopian lentil stew

Awards: Immigrant Entrepreneur of 2019

Sankara was the recipient of the Diversity Champion award, an event hosted by PRUDE Inc. with the support of Irving. We’re tremendously honoured to have been nominated and to have won the 2019 Diversity Champion Award in the Entrepreneur category. There are many partner restaurants, chefs, artisans, and grocers who have contributed in growing our social enterprise.

The event was a beautiful occasion celebrating like-minded individuals and organizations who are doing the work in making our community stronger and more diverse. If you’re reading this: thank you for your continued support!

The event saw over 400 people celebrate diversity & inclusion

Going Forward; Guided by the Past

We extend our sincere gratitude to all of you who have supported our start-up this year. Your compassion and encouragement means the world to us. We’re fueled with energy to continue doing the work. We hope you join us on the Sankara journey into this new decade.

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