What You Didn’t Know About Refugees + A Stellar Menu from a James Beard Award-Winning Chef

Recently, Denver was lucky to have James Beard Award-winning Chef Craig Stoll in town from Delfina in San Francisco, to cook an incredible meal for the African Community Center’s [ACC] The Public Good Gala.
The Gala was held at the gorgeous Joy Burns Center on the University of Denver campus, which houses the Fritz Knoebel School of Hospitality Management.
It was a true privilege to get to attend, and I learned so much.
Of course the food was outstanding – the menu of which you can view at the link below.
ACC resettles refugees in the Denver area, having done so for 477 of the newly-arrived in fiscal year 2013, with the biggest groups from Bhutan, Burma, Somalia, Sudan, Eritrea and Iraq.
The staff includes 30+ people, who speak a total of 26 languages.
Their mission is to help refugees rebuild safe, sustainable lives in Denver through supportive networks of people, services and community activities.
It really puts things in perspective in terms of how much we have to be grateful for to live in a country that allows us the ability to choose our own paths, within a free society.
And more, one where we extend ourselves to immigrants and refugees, who choose to or are forced to no longer call their country of origin home.

A refugee, as defined by the 1951 United Nations Convention, is:
A person who has been forced from his or her home and crossed an international border for safety. He or she must have a well-founded fear of persecution in his or her native country on account of race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group or political opinion.

There are currently 16 million refugees worldwide – the majority of whom live in refugee camps.
The United States admits the most refugees of any country that accepts refugees, and admissions for the U.S. in fiscal year 2014 are set at 70,000.
Here are the counts and areas expected to comprise that 70,000:
Near East/South Asia 34,000
Africa 14,000
East Asia 14,000
Latin America/Caribbean 5,000
Europe/Central Asia 1,000
Unallocated Reserve 2,000

Here’s the piece I wrote pre-event, which includes menu:

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