The bright yellow truck with the logo of a pair of spectacles perched over a luxurious moustache, ‘Abey Khao,’ looks like many other food trucks that attract hungry students at a college in Islamabad, Pakistan’s capital.
However, when placing their order, the students begin signalling with their hands, indicating that this is not your typical food truck.
The ‘Abey Khao’ food truck, which translates to “Eat Guys,” is Pakistan’s first mobile restaurant staffed entirely by deaf workers, providing them with an economic opportunity.
“Abey Khao” first opened on the Bhitai road in F-7 and has recently partnered with TMUC to open an on-campus food truck. “Abey Khao” signed an MoU with the university, and the bright yellow-themed truck can now be seen parked on the Millennium Universal College campus.
“Abey Khao” has appeared on a variety of national and international platforms. A hearing-impaired family launched the food truck, with both parents and two of their children either partially or completely deaf.
Ayesha Raza, Ayesha’s daughter and sister, can hear clearly, and she was one of the brains behind “Abey Khao.” She stated that “the majority of the deaf youth in Pakistan are unemployed, and they face issues such as language barriers, inequality, and discrimination,” and her initiative aims to challenge all of these issues.
The primary goal of this day is to raise awareness about how we can work together as a nation to ensure that the deaf are not denied a good quality of life. Let us hope that “Abey Khao’s” initiative is just the beginning of a more inclusive Pakistan in the future.
“With diagrams showing how to say simple phrases in sign language, the food truck not only provides employment but also helps bridge communication gaps between deaf people and the hearing community,” she explained.
“We should forge our own path through entrepreneurship, no matter how small, because we value our dignity as independent living beings above all else,” said Ayesha’s brother, Sheikh Faizan, using sign language.