by Amanda Ong
For the past seven years, the Somali Family Safety Task Force, which is based out of New Holly, where a significant portion of the Somali community lives, has been providing Somali and other East African families with resources around career, education, and personal development. What many people don’t know is that the Task Force is just as invested in preserving connections to Somali language and culture. Since 2017, they have published eight books aimed at Somali American families to practice reading and writing in Somali. The latest five Somali/English bilingual children’s storybooks, which had their book launch in January, were created by the Task Force with the support of Best Starts for Kids.
by Nura Ahmed
Somali chef and writer Ifrah F. Ahmed grew up cooking with her mother, knowing the recipes like the back of her hand. Cooking became her first love, and she continued doing it well into her adult years. As she went on, the memories of cooking alongside her mother, sharing recipes, and learning more about her Somali culture became incredibly important to her, thus the beginning of her traveling pop-up MILK & MYRRH was born. The name MILK & MYRRH was inspired by a vintage Somali cookbook Ahmed found that contained the names that Somalia was once called, which included “The Land of Milk and Myrrh.” Rooted in her Somaliness, the name called out to her and became not just an ode to her motherland but to her upbringing and all the memories she had of sharing her love for her Somali culinary tradition with the ones around her.
Continue reading Somali Chef and Writer Ifrah F. Ahmed Shares Her Culinary Tradition Through Pop-Ups
by Shukri Olow
Fresh fruits and seafood. White sandy beaches and miles of coastland that rival states like Hawai‘i. Markets that are lively until midnight and youth enjoying the freedom to roam unafraid. These are all experiences that my mother talks about when she recalls life before the civil war in Somalia.
Continue reading OPINION: From Somalia to Afghanistan, We Stand With Our Newest Neighbors
by Kamna Shastri
As an immigrant, it can be grating and alienating to go about your daily life without hearing the familiar lilt of your mother tongue. When you have moved to the United States to escape war or political instability and are trying to put down roots, it’s as important to retain a connection to your community as it is to make inroads into this new culture. This was the case for Sahra Farah, founder and director of Somali Community Services (SCS) of Seattle, based in Renton.
Continue reading For 27 Years, SCS Has Been a Catch-All for Seattle’s Somali Community
by Mark Van Streefkerk
Getting fresh, local produce in the hands of South Delridge’s East African, immigrant, and refugee communities has historically been a challenge. The USDA-designated food desert doesn’t have sufficient grocery options close by to meet the needs of the community, and last year’s closure of the West Seattle bridge only isolated the area even more. After securing important funding from the King Conservation District’s local food program about nine months ago, African Community Housing & Development (ACHD) decided to launch their own farmers market.
Featuring BIPOC farmers and vendors, the Delridge Farmers Market brings locally-grown, culturally appropriate options for fresh produce and food to the community. The market kicks off this Saturday, June 12, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the courtyard of Hope Academy at 9421 18th Avenue Southwest. Masks are required, as well as social distancing protocols.
The Delridge Farmers Market pilot program will take place on the second Saturday of each month from June to November 2021.
Continue reading Delridge Farmers Market Starts This Weekend, Featuring Local, BIPOC Farmers
by Elizabeth Turnbull
Over a week after Dolal Idd was fatally shot by police in Minneapolis, roughly 150 people gathered in front of the Tukwila Library on Sunday, Jan. 10, to honor the Somali American man’s life and to call for systemic change.
Many speakers mourned the loss of another Black life and spoke to the need for nationwide action on policing. Shukri Olow, a candidate for King County Council District 5, which encompasses some of South Seattle, spoke as a member of the Somali-Muslim community and as a mother herself.
“When I heard about what happened to Dolal, I couldn’t help but feel the pain of his mother, who ran away from the civil war to find a safe environment for her children,” Olow said. “I want you to think about fleeing a conflict … coming to safe shores only to have your child killed by a system that you do not understand, a system that does not see our humanity.”
Continue reading Vigil for Dolal Idd in Tukwila Shows Solidarity for Somali-Muslim Community and Demands Change