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Coronado chef travels to Ukrainian border to cook for refugees

Coronado chef travels to Ukrainian border to cook for refugees
Posted at 4:04 PM, Mar 14, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-14 20:54:30-04

CORONADO, Calif. (KGTV) - For more than a week, a Coronado man—and trained chef—has been volunteering near the Ukrainian border, cooking for refugees.

For Miguel Abed, the video showing the suffering in Ukraine became too much.

"He saw the images. He saw what was happening there, and he felt the need to help. It would be unlikely normally for him to just fly overseas and do something this dramatic, but something in his soul made him make this decision,” said family friend Inge Cornejo.

More than a week after the Russian invasion, Abed joined nonprofit World Center Kitchen and bought a plane ticket bound for Poland.

“He likes to cook and he felt by cooking and by feeding people, it’s something he could do personally,” said Cornejo.

For the past nine days, he's been in Przemysl, Poland, near the Ukrainian border, helping cook at refugee sites.

“Tiring, overwhelming. It’s hard, but it's been a life-changing experience for him. For me, it leaves me without words. He’s an amazing human being,” said Cornejo.

When Abed got to Poland, he decided cooking would only be part of the mission. The need was great.

“I know when he's not working his shifts as a chef, he’s bringing refugees, clothes and other things that they may need,” said Cornejo.

Abed's family started a Gofundme campaign to help him with his mission. He plans to volunteer for one more week.

“Like the saying goes, not all heroes wear capes. Some may wear aprons,” said Cornejo.

Cornejo says one of the highlights for Abed was a recent trip to visit and feed 45 orphans.