Filipino food is the core of my life. Being brought up by my Filipina mum in the UK, me and my kuya (Older brother) were exposed to Filipino food at a very young age.
Almost every week we’d roll 100’s of spring rolls in our pj’s and help mum put the pancit and adobo in mis-matched, colourful Tupperware. It was our contribution to the community parties where Filipinos and their families throughout the county came to meet, share their food, their lives, their laughter and.. more food.
We didn’t know it back then.. In our council estate house with no carpets, being fed rice, banana & ketchup. But we were lucky to experience our mother’s culture whilst growing up in Norfolk with our British dad.
Life didn’t come easy for my mum.. Yet she taught us a great deal about caring for others and to fight for what you want in life. Witnessing her determination, strength, grace and resilience taught us everything we needed to know.
Together we have over 12 years experience in various roles working in the hospitality industry, grafting and giving our everything for other businesses and other entrepreneurs throughout the years. Last year we decided it was our turn to do it for ourselves and we invested everything with no help from investors or fundraising.. We dived into the deep end, putting ourselves to the ultimate test - we opened our very own Filipino restaurant called Bruha - Meaning “witch”. An unpopular word thrown around sheepishly by my mum and her friends, laughing their heads off whilst cooking together in the kitchen.
We’re a small independent restaurant that opened in the heart of the Brighton Laines last year, September 2019. We knew it would be tough as a start-up business opening up in one of the UK’s biggest cities for food & drink.. Let alone at the start of the winter season. But we embraced the harsh seasonal change Brighton had in store for us.. knowing what the city brings from March, the start of a beautiful seasonal change. But unfortunately it never came.. As the sun started to make an appearance that week, restaurants were told to close overnight.
The economic upheaval created by COVID-19 has put businesses into a very uncertain position. Restaurants even more so.
Widening our perspective, being grateful for our breath and recognizing that while things are challenging and uncertain, there are also good things and good people in our daily lives that can make a big difference. We’re truly grateful for the huge amount of support we’ve been given so far by everyone. It’s indescribable how thankful we are to be seen and the requests for our take away services have been over-whelming.
When you're having people still express love and support in a variety of ways, it can make those periods of relative confinement more bearable..
Sometimes change is so vast and dislocating that it is hard to tell disaster from opportunity. Losing people around us to the Coronavirus.. And having a serious illness in the family, we needed more time to be with, care for and think about our loved ones at a scary time in all our lives, without ever diminishing our determination to keep going.
Those who know us, know that asking for anything is the hardest thing for us to do. But this has been an inevitably tough journey and we are reaching out to our beloved community to help us.
We need to raise a minimum of £25,000. This is what we will need to pay our overheads, debts and to survive the unforeseeable lock-down for us as a restaurant.
We don't want something for nothing, ever. So we have put together a range of rewards ready for when we reopen, suited for a range of budgets. We also have pledges with a charitable element, to help us provide PPE for the Philippines and provide NHS workers with meals.
Please pledge whatever you can and choose as many options as you like. We know it's hard times for many people out there. Know that every little bit is hugely appreciated and goes a long way.