A restaurant in Sharjah owned by two Filipinas serves as a symbol of hope, as all of their staff are people who lost their jobs in the UAE.
Lourds Adalia-Evertse, 34, and Cristine Caringal-Melad, 35, told Dubai 92 in an interview that they were all set to open the restaurant earlier this year, but it was derailed when the coronavirus pandemic struck.
That exceptional time, however, gave them an opportunity to rethink how to better serve their community in the UAE.
That’s when they thought of hiring a team of skilled people who were displaced from their work due to the pandemic.
“We felt it was our responsibility to the people to help them out during this trying time,” Cristine said.
“One of the earliest talking points we had was the question of how we can make a difference in the community,” Lourds added.
One of their staff, for example, is a barista who lost her job of 12 years.
Lourds narrated that when she asked the woman why she accepted their offer instead of pursuing another job in Abu Dhabi with a competitive salary, she told her: “Because at my lowest, you were there. When I had lost all hope, you took me in.”
The restaurant of the two best friends is set to open its doors later this month.