Passion 4 food- Free food to those in need twice a week


Passion 4 food, a restaurant which is is reaching out to Dublin’s homeless community with a hot meal and a sympathetic ear, is located on Camden Street, where it sees people from all backgrounds and walks of life each day, including those who are without a home.

Shawan Ebvahem, or Allan as everyone calls him, is the man behind Passion 4 food. Originally from Kurdistan, Allan moved to Ireland in 2000 and later went on to set up a Kebab shop with a difference. Passion 4 food, is quite unique as takeaways go, as it is well known giving free food to the homeless two days a week. “We have been doing this for years because they are coming in and asking for it,” says Allan. “We have been through that (being homeless)… I’ve been through it… most of us have been through it… and there is no shame. I tell them all the time that now it’s like this, but everything can change.

“I know people that were homeless about five years ago and now that have a decent job, a place to live and they are out there helping others. This is being human and has nothing to do with religion because we have multiple religions here and all of them are based on this kind of attitude which is good,” he explains.

Shawan Ebvahem, or Allan the mastermind behind Passion 4 Food. Photo credit – Ana Novais

When Allan was young, he decided to travel in search of adventure. He never planned on staying in Ireland for more than two years. He explained that for him it is very important to find peace and to spread peace around, wherever you go. “It doesn’t matter where you are when you feel safe and in peace, spread it around. Just give it to everyone else as much as you can,”says Allan.

“I know people that are just looking after their old neighbour, just once in a while knocking on their doors and asking: ‘How are you love?’ And this is so good and that’s what everyone should be doing really.”

Allan explains that the concept of his business is to help people. They donate meals to Our Lady’s Hospital and provide food to The Muslim Sisters of Éire, who in turn bring the food to the homeless people around the GPO and to the Homeless Mobile Run which is another group of volunteers helping homeless people in Dublin.

“Last week half of the sell went out to charity. I don’t know until when we can afford to do it, but we will do as much as we can”, says Allan.

“Sometimes it is just somebody coming and asking for food, they are not asking for money or to stay, they just want a bit of hot food. Some of them will say that they didn’t have any hot meal for the last 48 hours.”

Passion 4 food is proud to say that they do not waste any food. “On Mondays at 3 o’clock they are out there waiting for their meal,” says Allan. “You can have loads of money and be the unhappiest person in the world but it feels good when you are a good person,” he added.

Allan’s staff are very helpful and are trained to look after the homeless and treat them with respect and dignity. Allan explains how it is their duty not to make them feel down or embarrassed.

“Things go wrong sometimes and don’t go exactly how you planned,” says Allan, “It’s very easy to end up on the streets.”

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