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About us

Our kaupapa and values guide everything we do, from the kitchen to the boardroom

No decisions about us without us

People from refugee backgrounds are involved at all levels of Pomegranate Kitchen.

Giving back

Former refugees in New Zealand tell us they want to give back to this country and show they have more to offer than their 'refugee' label. We help this process by tapping their cooking skills to expand Wellington's tastebuds.

Developing skills

We facilitate training as this is sometimes a barrier for speakers of English as a second (or third, or fourth!) language. We provide commercial kitchen and food safety training, for potential employees who need it. Through Pomegranate Kitchen, people with a refugee background can get local experience and transferable skills in order to continue their journey as New Zealand citizens. 

Authentic, quality food

We use organic where possible, shop locally, our chickens and eggs are free range, and we use authentic recipes and methods from our cooks. 

Not for private profit

We are a social enterprise, and a registered charity. Any profit goes back into the business, and we keep rigorous and transparent accounts.​

Who's Involved?

At Pomegranate Kitchen we have a range of different backgrounds and skills, united by a love of home-cooked, nourishing food.



Hajar Mazraeh - Supervisor

Hajar is originally from Iran and ran a pita bread business as a refugee in Indonesia while awaiting a visa.


Genet Seyoum - Cook

Genet is originally from Ethiopia but has spent some time in Egypt.


Muna Al Naser - Cook

Muna is originally from Syria. Recently she was asked to help design a menu and share her cooking skills with Logan Brown restaurant.

Fatima Qasim Ali - Cook

Fatima is originally from Afghanistan, and brings a love of cooking to her work.



Nazia and Majed - Cooks

Nazia is from Afghanistan and Majed from Syria. Nazia is studying IT when she is not working at Pomegranate Kitchen.


Nada - Cook

Nada is from Iraq. The sambousek on the menu is her personal recipe.




Rebecca Stewart - General Manager,        Co-founder

Rebecca is a Wellingtonian who loves to eat! She has a background in not for profits, particularly program evaluation, in New Zealand Australia, India and Fiji. Most recently she worked for New Zealand Red Cross


Ange Wither - Co-founder, Chair

Ange is an incredible cook and food obsessive with with a background in organisational learning and development.

Her favourite thing to make just now is sourdough and seville orange marmalade




Hawa Kusama Fitzgerald - Board Member

Hawa is a Kiwi originally from Indonesia. She currently works for New Zealand Red Cross providing support in refugee resettlement. In a former life Hawa ran a large catering company, and still makes elaborate cakes and traditional Indonesian foods from time to time. 


Scott Barrett - Food Advisor, Board Member

Scott is originally from Australia but is now fully integrated into Kiwi life. He was the owner of the popular Elements cafe in Lyall Bay for many years, and now operates the Eat Street food truck.


Tan Huynh - Board Member

Tan is from a refugee background, and brings expertise in marketing, business development, building sector capability, and capital raising. He is Vietnam’s tallest man (probably) and fluent in Vietnamese. Tan believes that magic happens when people connect over a meal. His favourite dish is Pho, and Pavlova for dessert. 








Alex Hannant - Board Member

Alex is the CEO of the Ākina Foundation, and has a focus on social enterprise and leadership in New Zealand. Originally from the UK, Alex’s favourite dish to cook at the moment is spaghetti carbonara.