Meet the makers

East African Sisters

Fahan Ahmed and Safiya Duksya are the powerhouses behind East African Sisters, a catering company producing authentic East African feasts. Fahan and Safiya have a shared love of cooking, and this supportive duo had long dreamt of sharing their cuisine with the broader community.

Fahan and Safiya both hail from Somalia. Fahan arrived in Australia via Egypt in 1998 after the Somalian civil war forced her to flee her homeland, while Safiya arrived in 2005 from Ethiopia. They met when living in high rises in Flemington over 15 years ago and have been close friends ever since.

Not too long ago, the duo catered a twilight event at the Flemington community centre. With that successful event under their belt, Fahan and Safiya had the confidence to follow their dreams with the support of the Brotherhood of St Laurence's 'Stepping Stones' Program.

In early 2020, East African Sisters officially launched thanks to Moonee Valley City Council, Sustain Australia and Business of Food's training program called 'Food Business Boost'.

Since then, these creative women have continued to expand their business offerings, and in late 2020, they launched a range of Somalian chilli called Basbaas, bringing 'grandma's traditional Somali recipe with an Ethiopian twist' to kitchens everywhere.

Passionate about supporting other women, Fahan and Safiya worked on the 'Mamma's Kitchen' project — part of the Victorian Government's 'Working for Victoria' Covid initiative. The program employed 14 local women to make culturally-appropriate meals for locals who were doing it tough. As the East African Sisters' say, "We support each other, and we support other women as well. Everyone helps each other" – we couldn't agree more!

You can book East African Sisters to cater for your next event, or order some tasty basbaas via their website at



Moonee Valley/Flemington, VIC



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