In a country full of devastation, hunger, and pain, Soup for Syria shines a ray of hope. After seeing the devastating images of Syrian refugee children and adults alike on the news, Barbara Massaad could no longer sit back and watch. She decided to visit a refugee camp in Syria, where she was touched especially by the children who were suffering. This trip would lead to a cookbook of soup recipes, selling many copies to raise money for Syrian refugees. 

Why soup?

The idea for soup came when she and a friend started making and distributing soup at the farmer’s market on Tuesdays. She thought, most people might not want what a refugee would eat on a daily basis, but “soup is elemental, and it always makes sense, even when the world around us fails to,” according to Anthony Bourdain, one of the many chefs that contributed to this book. She reached out to some chefs she knew, and sure enough celebrity chefs like Yotam Ottolenghi, Alice Waters, and Mark Bittman jumped on board, no questions asked.

Over four million refugees are dispersed over five countries, and almost eight million Syrians are internally displaced. About half of the Syrian refugees are under 18 years old, most of whom have not been to school in months.

The money made from Soup for Syria sales go directly to the UN Refugee Agency and a few other charities. The purpose of this book is to raise awareness of this dire situation that most people are not completely aware of, while raising money to help as many people as possible

How are soup recipes going to help refugees?

I have to admit, at first I thought the idea of a book full of soup recipes is completely irrelevant and pointless to help refugees. However, this book has raised over $300,000 already with little publicity. The money might not end the Syrian Refugee Crisis immediately, but it is a stepping stone in the right direction.

Barbara Massaad saw a problem and used her passions to do her share. It’s a simple idea for a great cause and inspiration to know it doesn’t take much to make a difference.

If you’d like you get the book and help out, just follow this link and order your book! If not, I hope that you found the concept of this book as inspiring as I do and that maybe you can use something that you’re passionate about make a difference too.