Just south of Beirut, Lebanon, lies the Burl El Barajneh Refugee Camp, a 65-year-old mazelike settlement of crowded apartments. It’s home to victims of war from Palestine, Syria, Lebanon and beyond, fathers who struggle to find employment and mothers who spend their days cooking for their families. Mariam Shaar, a generational refugee who has spent her entire life in the camp, recognizes an opportunity in the oppression. She enlists a group of women and harnesses their impressive culinary skills to launch a catering company. With gorgeous plates of studded pilafs, enticing freekeh dishes and stuffed grape leaves, the women of Soufra build a loyal clientele. But when Shaar decides to grow the business beyond the boundaries of the camp, she is faced with a host of hurdles. Soufra elucidates the myriad challenges that stand between refugees and success, as well as what it takes to overcome them.
- Thomas Morgan