A group of Syrian refugees created a festive feast to thank a Deeside community which welcomed them after they fled their war-torn homes.
Sam Yousif and Adel Assaf both escaped the conflict a year ago and were re-homed in Westhill.
As the Kurdish pair have not been allowed to work since they migrated to the UK, they have been volunteering with Banchory West Church and other community groups.
Mr Assaf was a top chef in a restaurant in Beirut, Lebanon, for more than 20 years but was imprisoned by Islamic State for 18 months after trying to get his brother released from the terrorist group’s jail in Aleppo.
And he put his skills to good use recently – ably assisted by Mr Yousif and their respective wives, Sabaa and Khaja – by cooking a banquet of traditional Middle Eastern cuisine for more than 70 guests at the church.
Church member, Dr Hani Zakri, originally from Aleppo, acted as translator and interpreter for the chef, who also gave a demonstration.
Don Morrison, who is part of the Syrian Scots Refugee Support Group, said the group has become an integral part of the community in both Banchory and Westhill.
He said: “These guys are pretty bored, there’s not a lot for them to do and they’re not allowed to work for payment in their first year due to benefit rules, so they have been volunteering.
“What they really need is companionship and also an opportunity to learn or work on their English which will help them look for jobs in the future.
“We decided we would organise this event to let them say thanks to the community and also help them develop those links further.
“It was very well received, a lot of the people in Banchory lived and worked in the Middle East so really appreciated the cuisine.”
Mr Assaf hopes to return to being a professional chef when he is allowed to work again and hopes to start an in-house catering business.
While Mr Yousif has been volunteering as a gardener and hopes to pursue this professionally in the future.