Hello and welcome to Kapanna's Crowdfunder campaign! Thank you so much for being here.
To be example of authenticity and originality. This is the reason I had to leave Namibia- there, I was limited by cultural norms and oppressed by laws criminalising my authentic self. There, in character and mind, I’d always have to hold back to fit narrow definitions of a man. I realised that the only way I could reach my potential, and pursue my true passions in cooking, in music and anything else to the fullest, was to be in the land of hope and glory mother of the free. Otherwise, I would never reach the best Raymond and harvest the depths of my creative energy.
Fire, Food + Friends
Let us go together to an ancient time. To a place where the blazing sunsets and the fire is lit. They gather together in a circle around the crack and hiss of the hardwood. The warmth of the flame pushes the desert cold back. Fruits and nuts gathered are shared equally. The air is perfumed by the smell of meat cooking on the coals. Conversation and laughter follow.
Welcome to my fire. This is what I have brought with me from home, the land of two deserts the Namib and Kalahari, the world’s oldest desert and the only place where the desert meets the sea. Home to the first Southern African people the San Bushmen.
The BRAAI, what we call a barbeque, comes from the Afrikaner community, which influenced a lot of the Southern African culture through colonialism. By postcolonial error the BRAAI has become a symbol of liberation. It's more than a barbeque, it's a celebration of who we are how far we've come and optimism of the future. This is why we chose the BRAAI and that's why it is so special. Now to share this part of my heritage in the oldest, largest, most bustling city in European history is ideal and who best to do it than yours truly?
I have a gift, eyes closed I can tell you what you are cooking, what’s in it, and what cooking mistakes you’ve already made! I can literally taste food without eating it. I cook to please and satisfy coupled with a lot of love. I was born and raised this way, and I sharpened my food-science knowledge by going to Chef School at Westminster Kingsway College.
Opportunities & Challenges
I had just received my residency after a long 5 year wait for asylum, and was fresh in London. I was hungry and thirsty for opportunities to make my vision real.
I spoke to a lady called Erin who connected me to TERN (The Entrepreneurial Refugee Network) to learn how to start my own food business. TERN gave me the structure within which I could develop my BRAAI idea and showcase my food and abilities.
The opportunities happened FAST. I won a cooking competition, and within 4 months of beginning to work on Kapanna, we are trading at Mercato Metropolitano in Elephant & Castle.
I am stretching myself to meet the gifts that keep coming. We have been contracted to vend at the upcoming South Africa & England cricket match this September. We are opening a shack in Hounslow London Market Place in March.
There have been so many challenges. I started Kapanna with almost no equipment, no funds, covid restrictions, navigating the post-covid hospitality industry conditions, broken extraction, finding the right people... the pressure is real but despite this, we are still open and growing. I am juggling three jobs at the moment to make sure that I cover my own financial needs and pour everything I have into making Kapanna sustainable.
I keep reminding myself that pressure is what diamonds are made from. When the pressure feels bigger than what any human should experience, my faith has helped me get through.
There are a few financial barriers that I need to cross for Kapanna to be safe and viable. I need to feel safe paying my employees. I need to purchase Kapanna a tent to bring the fire, food + friends vibes to events where they belong. And I need some critical equipment that will make cooking feasts a lot easier, cheaper and more efficient. At this point, I feel sure that the only thing standing between Kapanna and success is £3500. It's time to level up!
How you can help
This business will be built on real flavour, authenticity, and community. This business is about fire, food + friends. Can you help me light this fire?
You are welcome to come to Mercato Metropolitano and try the new menu, get to know us and see what Kapanna is all about before you commit. I hope you will be inspired to get involved!
Follow me on Instagram @thesouthafricangrilluk to stay posted on Kapanna's progress.