Karma Kitchen volunteer Zara serving diners at 3Fils restaurant in Jumeirah Fishing Harbour Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/XPRESS

DUBAI: A voluntary group in Dubai is taking the pay-it-forward initiative across various restaurants in town.

On Sunday, American-Pakistani expat, Sehr Kareem, who leads Karma Kitchen hosted the group’s first event at 3Fils restaurant in Jumeirah Fishing Harbour where guests didn’t pay for their meal but left a certain amount for diners who came after them.

“Every fortnight we will tie up with a restaurant. Our team will help in kitchen chores. For instance, at 3Fils, eight of us doubled as waiters and dishwashers,” said Sehr.


“The guests had no idea that the people serving them included a restaurant owner, stock exchange broker, and software engineers,” she added.

Mansi Vivek, 42, who works for NASDAQ stock exchange said she volunteered to wash dishes. “I’ve always been curious to find out what’s the scene like inside the kitchen of a busy restaurant and this came across as the perfect opportunity.”

IT professionals Rhea Ganapathy, and Zeina Zureikh who assisted Mansi in washing the utensils said they thoroughly enjoyed the experience. “It also helped me realise the importance of diswashers,” said Rhea.

Pakistani sisters, Zara and Kiran Gokal, who are pursuing their bachelor’s degree in USA and UK, played waitresses.

“I am here for my summer break and am lucky I was able to to do something for the society during Ramadan,” said Zara.

Akmal Anuar, 36, head chef at 3Fils admitted he was initially reluctant to be part of the initiative.

“The thought of rookies taking over the restaurant filled me with dread. Who would have thought it would turn out to be such a gratifying experience,” he said.