A Place to Call Home: Mitch Orr & Erin Riley


Aussie Chef Mitch Orr cooks for Find A Bed founder, Erin Riley to say thanks for her work helping find accomoation for bushfire victims during the 2020 crisis.


In the heat of the 2020 Australian bushfires, Erin Riley started an organisation that for many, would prove lifesaving. Find A Bed is a community of volunteers that connects people in need of emergency accommodation during crises with a place to stay. Since it’s inception, the organisation has helped find accommodation for almost 1000 people over the course of both the bushfires and pandemic.

Erin, who herself is from a community that was heavily affected by the bushfires describes how she brought Find A Bed to life; “I started this very simple website in under an hour and just had two buttons ‘I have a place to stay’ and ‘I need a place to stay’ and… within a day we had over 100 people who registered to host people and very quickly the requests for places to stay started flowing in.”

Find A Bed is driven by volunteers who give up their homes to help others in need of accommodation; “a lot of people in the communities we've been talking to have just been so inspiring and so incredible with their resilience, strength and ingenuity and really solving difficult problems.”

To say thanks to Erin, we invited head chef Mitch Orr to cook her his delicious Grilled Lamb Loin Chops with Peach Salad. Mitch agrees that Erin’s work with Find A Bed is legendary and understands the struggles of this year with his experience in the food service sector; “it's been a really hard year from the drought to the bushfires to everything that's going on now it's really amazing to see how creative people adapt and the way everyone's changed their businesses… to provide services that people need.”

When it comes to lamb, Mitch sees sharing as a central part of celebrating, particularly during the holiday season; “I really like just a big spread of food on the table and everyone’s diving in and helping… it breaks down the barriers… it's really the best and the most fun way to eat.”  Erin also enjoys celebrating with her loved ones, particularly in light of such a challenging year for many; “I think it's so much about that Sunday afternoon barbecue with friends and family that those are the really incredible moments and the ones I really treasure.”

To learn more about Find A Bed, visit https://findabed.com.au/

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