I’d like to start this article with an apology! Here is what I expected to find when I visited the Asian Association of Chesterfield: A small group of elderly, Asian ladies running groups for Chesterfield’s Asian community. Here is what it is: The Asian Association is a multicultural, fully inclusive community of socially conscious leaders from all walks of life that champion and support those in need. So, for my unconscious stereotyping, you have my sincerest apologies. Now, let’s showcase and celebrate all the wonderful things the Asian Association does for the people and communities of Chesterfield.
Established in 1982 with the aim of promoting the culture, education, health and welfare of Asian people residing in Chesterfield and North Derbyshire, the Asian Association have been breaking down barriers, challenging stereotypes and facilitating social integration for almost 40 years!
The Asian Association's doors are open to everyone and they are always looking for volunteers to help them with their social action projects. I was very pleased to see one of my old school friends Laura volunteering in the kitchen and it was great to hear that local painter and decorator Matt Bradbury had volunteered his time and skills to give the place a complete makeover.
From the moment I entered I was made to feel very welcome by Shar and the team and was pleased to learn that they offer an Asian cookery course that Bekah will definitely be attending when it is running again; I also fancy a bit of yoga as well, it does wonder for the back you know!
Based in Hasland and open on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 9:15am to 5:15pm
The Asian Association host a variety of fantastic groups, workshops and community projects including:
Domestic abuse support
Race & religion hate crime awareness
Bhangra dance classes
Asian cooking classes
Drop in sessions
Health & wellbeing workshops
During the pandemic they have been running a social action project that has helped 100’s of vulnerable and isolated people across Chesterfield amidst one of the most challenging times in recent history.
Saffron Kitchen was launched in the summer of 2020 as a community meal service, delivering fresh, hot meals directly to the door. During the pandemic this service has been a lifeline for many residents in our community. A variety of both eastern and western dishes are cooked on site in their purpose-built kitchen and I was lucky enough to sample the goods! Perks of the job.
For those who can afford it a modest price is charged, but for those who are struggling financially Saffrons Kitchen offer a free meal service as part of the ‘Feeding Derbyshire’ project run by Rural Action Derbyshire. This service has proved invaluable over the past year.
Saffron Kitchen is going from strength to strength and now offer a full catering service for dinner parties and small events. The profits are fed back in to The Asian Association and used to further fund social action projects in our communities. I look forward to having some friends over soon and treating them to the delights that Saffrons Kitchen deliver to my front door.
I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to The Asian Association and cannot recommend Saffron Kitchen and all they do enough.
If you wish to order a tasty meal and/or get involved with them please get in touch.
Penmore Business Centre,
T: 01246 297452
Words: Simon Paterson
Images: The Asian Association