CLEVELAND — A nonprofit teamed up with three Cleveland-area restaurants to ensure that local Afghan refugees could celebrate Thanksgiving with specially prepared halal food.
The U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants helped 60 different Afghan families receive more than 200 Thanksgiving meals, WEWS-TV reported Thursday.
The meals included a mix of traditional Afghan, Somali and Middle Eastern cuisine, all of which were halal, meaning they were fit for consumption by Muslims.
A welcome note and some information about Thanksgiving was also included.
The refugees are among tens of thousands of Afghans who have arrived across the U.S. to begin the process of resettlement following the fall of Kabul.
"When I hear about new refugees coming I feel their pain," said Kifaya Mohammed, the owner of Kifaya's Kitchen, a local eatery which provided many of the meals.
Mohammed is a Somali native who came to the U.S. in 2006 and has helped feed refugees for years. She said she knows how stressful it is to arrive in a "new country with new food" and hopes the Thanksgiving meals provide a sense of comfort for the refugees.
"I've been there so I want to be able to help them right now and I have the chance to help them," Mohammed said.