The Asylum Seeker Resource Centre (ASRC) has been providing support to people seeking asylum in Australia for nearly 20 years.

Its Melbourne-based social-enterprise catering service employs 16 people from around the world and usually caters big events, weddings and parties.

With most of those on hold, the ASRC Catering kitchen in Fitzroy North has started cooking and delivering healthy, affordable meal options for Melburnians.

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The heat-at-home vegetarian meals cost around $15 to $20 and include dishes such as spiced Moroccan root-vegetable tagine served with sumac couscous; sweet-and-sour Persian eggplant stew made with walnuts and pomegranates; and Somalian sambusa – pastry parcels filled with pumpkin, smashed peas, coriander and brown lentils.

Two soups were recently added to the menu as well – spiced Moroccan lentil, chickpea and vegetable; and Ethiopian red-kidney-bean soup with red peppers.

The meals can be frozen or kept in the fridge for up to three days. And each one you buy enables the ASRC to provide one meal to a person seeking asylum through its Footscray headquarters.

“When I see people enjoying my food it makes me happy,” says Jenny, a transgender woman from Malaysia who’s been employed by ASRC Catering for three years and was recently promoted to cook.

Before coming to Ausralia, Jenny ran a catering business and hopes to study as a chef here.

“My dream is to open a small restaurant and start over again.”

ASRC Catering delivers within 20 kilometres from Tuesday to Friday for a flat rate of $10. Orders should be placed 48 hours in advance and there is a $50 minimum spend. Pickup is also available at 321 St Georges Road, Fitzroy North.

meals.asrc.org.au