Soupie customers dig deep for Rohingya refugees

Helping hand: Soupie coordinator Dave Seegar (left) with Chris Thomas, the Margaret River local who approached with the idea of raising money through the twice-weekly soup kitchen. Photo: Nicky Lefebvre
Helping hand: Soupie coordinator Dave Seegar (left) with Chris Thomas, the Margaret River local who approached with the idea of raising money through the twice-weekly soup kitchen. Photo: Nicky Lefebvre

The Margaret River Soup Kitchen has donated $5000 to the UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, to support Rohingya refugees.

Throughout the months of February and March, Soupie volunteers collected donations for the Rohingya Refugees.

Soupie coordinator Dave Seegar organised for the fundraising to take place after being approached by a Margaret River local who immigrated from India many years ago.

He was gravely concerned for the hundreds of thousands of people displaced to the monsoonal regions of Bangladesh. Much conversation was generated around the plight of the Rohingya people, a Muslim minority who have fled Myanmar in what has been described as one of the fastest growing humanitarian crises in the world.

Soupie brings together people from all walks of life and so reminds us of the strength within our community... That people gave so generously...is a wonderful sign of humanity.

Soupie coordinator Dave Seegar

UNICEF reported in April that over 700,000 Rohingya children in Bangladesh and Myanmar are in dire need of humanitarian assistance and protection.

Urgent efforts are needed to help the Rohingya people who are threatened either by the approaching cyclone season in Bangladesh or by ongoing violence and denial of their basic rights in Myanmar.

The Soupie opens two nights a week across the year, providing affordable and nourishing meals to all in the community, and has done for over 20 years.

“Soupie brings together people from all walks of life and so reminds us of the strength within our community,” said Dave Seegar. 

“That people gave so generously to support people in need in Bangladesh, is a wonderful sign of humanity.”

Funds were donated to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), a United Nations programme with the mandate to protect refugees, forcibly displaced communities and stateless people, and assist in their voluntary repatriation, local integration or resettlement to a third country.

Mr Seegar said he looked forward to hearing about ways to support other community efforts through the Soupie and welcomed suggestions from the public.