Marché Ferdous is a Middle Eastern restaurant in Montreal, Canada, that serves shawarma and other delicacies. The owners, Yahya Hashemi and Ala Amiry, are originally from Iran and Iraq respectively.
After living in Canada for 31 years, Hashemi wanted to find a way to give back. So a few months back, he put a sign on the restaurant door inviting anyone who can't afford a meal to come in and have dinner on the house. And they're now being praised on Facebook after someone spotted the sign and posted it.
Sean Jalbert posted the photos to Facebook and attracted some 6,000 shares and hundreds of comments praising the restaurant. He writes:
"Curious enough I walked in and pretend I had no money and asked for food. She didn't ask anything, but said we welcome you and pick whatever you like, including anything I wanted to drink."
"Made me smile and warm inside I paid for my food and told them they were awesome for doing this."
"They said it wasn't for the holiday season, but all the time they want to encourage helping each other through tough times. Absolutely incredible."
Hashemi told BuzzFeed News that “we are happy for our small little contribution.” He said that his restaurant is a few doors down from a church, and a few years back, he started telling panhandlers to go to his restaurant and pay whatever they could afford if they were hungry.
Word spread quickly, and three months ago, Hashemi decided to offer dinner to anyone who says they can't afford to pay for free.
Hashemi says that the decision stemmed from Canada being so welcoming to them and their Muslim faith to take care of the needy. “This is part of our faith, part of our belief,” he said. “This is what we do back home.”