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Project O Offers Free Tutoring for Soweto Students

Beyond any doubt, the greatest investment we can make is to educate ourselves. A good education is the key that unlocks future possibilities and helps achieve your every goal; whether it’s getting a job at a company you admire, owning a nice home, supporting your family, driving the car of your dreams or, even becoming the master of your own business.

Project O is a youth development organisation that aims to give underprivileged students a better chance at attaining their goals. The NPO is excited to embark on its first and biggest project – offering free and valuable tuition to students at Orlando High School in Soweto, Johannesburg.

Their goal is to give matriculants from disadvantaged backgrounds a passport to a brighter future. The classes commence every Saturday from 8am to 1pm. Individually, the instructors volunteer two hours of tuition a month, per subject. This does not include the time it takes to do class preparation, formulate lesson plans and provide after-class assistance. 

The tutors offer in-depth lessons in Maths, Maths Literacy, Physical Science, English, Accounting, Business, Economics, Geography, History and Zulu. The students are also treated to a hearty lunch, which is well deserved after dedicating their Saturday mornings to be at school.

On 2 February 2019, Project O had a ‘study skills and orientation day’. The workshop consisted of interactive activities and discussions that focused on stress and time management, study skills and mental health. This productive and rewarding project is ongoing throughout 2019 and hopefully, for years to follow.

 

Project O has many noble objectives in store for the future of this enterprise, including:

  • Creating a safe learning environment by developing the school library and a study room, as many learners are unable to study at home.
  • Raising funds to create a ‘school uniform system’, where learners will be given uniforms, which will be returnable once it gets small or when they leave school. It will then be passed on to other students.
  • Starting a sporting and extramural programme, so that learners can develop skills apart from those learnt in the classroom.
  • Taking learners on a camp to develop their leadership and communication skills.
  • Exposing learners to various opportunities after they matriculate, through seminars and assemblies.

 

Project O aims to break the cycle of poverty through education. By improving the students’ grades, the organisation hopes to give them the opportunity to attain a matric certificate, get into university and go on to get good jobs after school. They would also like to introduce these promising teens to the prospects of bursaries and learnerships.

Project O would like to extend their tutoring service to other schools and add on more grades once the organisation grows. Inshaa-Allah. Funding is vital to the success of the project and is currently received through various sponsorships and donations. Some of the items that have been kindly donated are stationary, utensils, food, textbooks and tutoring material. The team is especially grateful to every single volunteer as, without their hard work and dedication, none of it would be possible.

These sponsors are:

  • Ace it Tuition
  • Freeway & i22 Works
  • Radical Products
  • 360 Tactical Security
  • Changing Tides

 

“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world” – Nelson Mandela.

Project O is armed with the best artillery to help these students triumph against any academic battle. Their resignation from idle Saturday mornings will indeed rear the next generation of doctors, lawyers, scientists, engineers and of course, teachers.

For more information, please contact Project O CEO, Yumna Patel on 083 500 8018 or email projecto.org@gmail.com

ICare’s Annual Children’s Day Spreads Cheer to Underprivileged Kids

The most valuable lessons that we can learn from children are how to play without abandon, find joy in the simplest things and be genuinely happy for no reason. These are the nuggets of wisdom that were so freely and joyously spread by kids of all ages at ICare’s Annual Children’s Day. Despite their less than ideal socio-economic situations, children from various orphanages and safe havens were treated to an entire day of FUN and PLAY, banishing thoughts of their despairing conditions without any worry about tomorrow.

The ICare Children’s Foundation raised the spirits of dozens of underprivileged kids on 6 December 2018, at the Castle of Good Hope in Cape Town. They were transported from numerous  homes in the Cape area, including Bokaap Helpers, Elonwabeni Child and Family Centre, Marsh Memorial, Beitun Nur, Peace Home, Sherwood Park Safe House, Heideveld Safe House, Wisdom Pond, Driftsands Madressah, SOS Childrens’ Home, Solomons Haven, CT Multipurpose Centre and Baitul Ansaar.

For most of the elated youngsters, this was not just their first trip to the Castle of Good Hope, but it was their first journey into the actual CBD. Organisers and volunteers had a fun-filled day planned out, dotted with exciting activities, hearty meals and snacks, party packs and engaging rounds of sports and games. The kids also thoroughly enjoyed Playpoi, a performance art composed of swinging special tethered weights in rhythmical patterns.

The City of Cape Town Fire and Rescue also lent their time and skills to do an informative presentation on fire-safety awareness. These tips are vital to vulnerable children living in informal settlements that are prone to shack fires.

Starting the day off on a healthy note, the children were treated to a nutritious breakfast and later a delicious lunch, which was the perfect refresher on the active day. Local professional soccer players from Cape Town City F.C. contributed their time to interact with the kids and gave them a motivational talk.

A fantastic grand total of over R50 000 was raised and contributed towards the event, made possible by a thread of charitable sponsors. ICare extends their most heartfelt gratitude to:

  • Shaieda and Adiel Lakay, as well as the Wynberg volunteers for preparing the breakfast, fruit and party packs.
  • Florida Foods, Truda Chips, Jive, Castle of Good Hope, Sulaiman & Sons, Palmo Meats and other sponsors.
  • Sports Stepping Stones, for providing the sporting activities.
  • The Original Cause Cabal, for introducing the children to Playpoi.
  • Cape Town City Football Club, for making time in their busy schedule to spend time with the kids.
  • Ivan Neethling and his team for sponsoring the venue.

Guest Patrons included Pastor Emmanuel Platzes, Prince and Paramount Chief Cyril January, and Adam Cloete (representative of the January Royal House of the Khoisan).

Undoubtedly the highlight of their year, the kids’ jubilant experience at ICare’s Annual Children’s Day is one which they will fondly remember. Thanks to ICare for bringing such joy into these little lives!

 

For more information on ICare Children’s Foundation, contact Sadiyya Absalom on 081 390 5039 / 021 699 0302 or email sadiyya@icare.org.za

ICare Children’s Foundation Hosts Annual Muharram Senior’s Lunch

One of the greatest honours in life is taking care of those who once took care of us. While the elderly are often forgotten and overlooked, these incredible men and women should be celebrated as the pillars of society, admired for their contribution to their communities and consulted for their wisdom and experience.

The ICare Children’s Foundation in Rylands, Cape Town, recently commemorated these venerable souls by hosting a Muharram (new year) lunch in their honour. The welfare organisation, which usually works in aid of the youth, acknowledges senior citizens annually with an enjoyable and memorable luncheon to ring in the Islamic new year. For some of these respected guests, this is the only outing of its kind that they attend during the year.

The event was held at The Gatesville Civic Centre in Gatesville, Cape Town, on 11 October 2018. A total of 320 guests were treated to a delicious 4-course meal which included starters, two mains and desserts. Other than the appetising dishes and splendid company, the retirees were also delighted by entertainment and gifts.

Young talent entertain the esteemed elderly guests

Seniors from all walks of life, races and religions united under one roof and rejoiced in this special occasion, gratified in just being remembered. The guests were invited from various old age homes and villages through senior networks in the area, including Apricot Village, Beitul Amman, Women Who Care, Bonteheuwel Walking Ladies and Kensington Home to name a few.

The function wouldn’t have been possible without the generous contribution and assistance from local businesses and individuals in the community. They were able to raise R20 000 in sponsorships and R5000 in cash.

 

ICare thanks all their donors and mentions that they wish to grow the annual event to benefit even more people in the future. Inshaa-Allah.

For more information on ICare Children’s Foundation, please contact Sadiyya Absalom on 021 699 0302 or email sadiyya@icare.org.za

 

IRTIQA Winter Charity Drive

“The fastest way to change society is to mobilise the women of the world.”Philosopher and diplomat, Charles Malik.

The incredible women of IRTIQA Magazine have mobilised efforts to make a difference and play their part in changing the world. Led by founder and editor Nadia Cassim, the ladies teamed up with TL Modiri, an NPO in the Eldorado Park area, which feeds over 500 men, women and children every week throughout the year. The aim of this collaboration was to distribute essential groceries, bulk food items, blankets and clothing to families in need.

On 28 May 2018, food parcels and blankets were allocated to families with young children, while items of clothing were distributed to all needy recipients. Overall, approximately R10 000 worth of goods were donated to the community.

 

Extraordinary women like Jamila Cassim generously contributed a large number of blankets and food items, and organisations such as the African Centre for Biodiversity made commendable grocery donations towards the project. People from all walks of life came together to assist a community in need, radiating the Ubuntu spirit that South Africa is famous for.

TL Modiri continues with their charitable operations on a weekly basis, even though the coordinators themselves do not stem from high-income households. IRTIQA appeals to the public to assist them by providing bulk food items such as:

  • Maize
  • Rice
  • Beans
  • Meat (halaal)
  • Samp
  • Tinned Fish, etc.

There’s nothing as gratifying and humbling as feeding someone who had no idea where their next meal would come from. As we look across our own abundant dinner tables each evening, spare a thought for those who have bare cupboards, vacant fridges and empty plates. We have so much to offer, all we need to do now, is give.

 

For more information on IRTIQA Magazine’s projects, contact Nadia Cassim on 082 424 6191 or email editor@irtiqa.co.za

To assist with TL Modiri projects, contact Natalie George on 082 883 7620.

Winter Warmth Drive 2018 – UJ Muslim Students Association

In this fast-paced world we live in, it is without a doubt that everyone seems too occupied to help those less fortunate, however, this isn’t the case for a concerned group of youths who collectively go by the name, Muslim Students Association (MSA). While being fortunate enough to receive tertiary education at one of Joburg’s most prestigious institutions, they find the time between lecture schedules and study sessions to give their time and effort to help others.

 

The MSA at the University of Johannesburg (UJ) was established in 2001. This dynamic group of young Muslims meet at the jamaat khana (place of worship) on campus to share ideas on how to help the underprivileged. The word spread to students at Auckland Park’s Kingsway Campus and the Doornfontein Campus, and it didn’t take long before they all began working together towards making a difference.

The teams work hand in hand and use various methods to raise funds, such as door-to-door collections, acquiring corporate social responsibility sponsorships from large companies, collecting donation boxes after jummah salaah (Friday prayers), and asking family and friends to donate generously. 

With the funds that have been collected, items are purchased from wholesalers at a discounted price,” says coordinator, Muhammed Asvat. “Blankets are purchased from Moosa Blankets in Johannesburg, maize meal and baked beans are bought from Yarona Cash and Carry (who also sponsor a great deal of items), while gloves, beanies, socks, scarfs and ear warmers were kindly donated.”

 

This year, the team successfully managed to raise R27 500, which was enough to assemble 250 hampers. Once the items were purchased, they were delivered to the Auckland Park Campus, where young MSA members proceeded with packing the hampers.

Each year, hampers are delivered to people who need them the most. In 2017 and 2018, the Benoni Muslim Jamaat (BMJ) were recipients of the hampers. They had contacted the MSA for assistance because they house a few needy students at their madrassah (school). On the 18th of May 2018, after jummah salaah (Friday prayers), the MSA team along with many other students used their own vehicles to transport the goods to their destination in Benoni.

 

To culminate the completion and success of this year’s winter warmth drive, a nominated member of the MSA rendered a speech at their assembly and the congregation received a few words of advice from respected BMJ principal, Moulana Ayyub Kachwee.

It’s always heart-warming to see the youth take time off from their studies and social activities to give back to less-fortunate communities. We hope their kindness and generosity will inspire even more student organisations to follow suit.

For more information on MSA UJ projects, please contact Muhammed Asvat on 079 152 7296.

The Travelling Eid Shoe Box Project 2018

A beautifully wrapped shoebox containing tons of goodies is enough to light up any child’s day and fill their heart with joy. The Travelling Eid Shoe Box Project aims to bring happiness to disadvantaged children on Eid – the celebratory day which marks the end of the fasting month.

The Muslim Woman of Wonder Foundation, established by Mrs Faheema Patel, has embarked on a mission to collect and distribute these boxes of delight to children from underprivileged areas, most of whom are mainly orphans and foster kids. The project, which is in its second year running, allows children to feel loved and gives them a sense of belonging. It’s a powerful reminder that they are not forgotten and that they are valued and respected.

Faheema Patel is a working mother of ten. She manages the foundation in her spare time and is currently studying as well. Her determination to make a difference is exhibited through the incredible goals she sets for herself. “None of this would be possible without the generous contributions of those around us; Lenasia Muslim School, Africa Muslims Agency and people who have responded to our plea for donations on social media as well,” says Faheema. She expresses her gratitude to the people in the community for taking time out to make generous contributions to this worthy course.

“My husband, Dawood, and my kids have been a big part of this journey from day one. They are not only my right hand and biggest fans, but also the biggest sponsors of their time.” The family spends about three hours a day filling boxes with toiletries, toys, sweets and chocolates, board games and warm clothing items.

By 10 June 2018, the gifts will be distributed to destitute areas around Gauteng: Ennerdale, Eldorado Park, Klipspruit and Kliptown. Collection and packaging of gifts are currently underway at the foundation in Ennerdale where sponsors, friends and family gather in the little free time they have to pack the boxes.

 

The Travelling Eid Shoe Box Project has created unity in the surrounding areas, and with the experience, resources and support of all South Africans, this project is bound to be a success.

For more information or to offer assistance and donations, please contact Faheema Patel on 078 425 9812 or email muslimwomanofwonderfoundation@mweb.co.za

Winter Warmth Drives 2018

The winter season is slowly creeping in and with it comes icy and unpredictable weather. Unfortunately, there are still many poverty-afflicted families and individuals around South Africa who can’t afford heating, insulating clothes or even a decent blanket to keep them warm.

Muslim organisations all over the country have decided to step up and lead the drive in providing warm apparel and blankets for those in need.

Sisters of Hope, Ashraful Uloom, Darul Ihsan, Al Imdaad, The Jamiatul Ulama SA and Industry Bakery – to name a few – have all put out appeals to the public to donate blankets generously. Some organisations like IRTIQA Magazine, the Muslim Students Association at the University of Johannesburg and Africa Muslims Agency have broadened their scope to donations of clothes, canned food and various other items to help the disadvantaged and destitute keep cosy and content during the upcoming winter.

More established organisations have even targeted communities nationwide; Ashraful Uloom (a Johannesburg- based organisation) has already distributed items in Cape Town and Al Imdaad distributed blankets at Jadu Place informal settlement in Durban.

 

 

The collection and distribution of items will continue over the next few months around South Africa. Teams of volunteers have kindly donated their time, efforts and money towards these Winter Warmth projects, hoping to make life a little better for their local communities.

More information about each project can be found on each organisation’s website and social media pages, as well as on our Proudly Muslims of South Africa Facebook and Instagram pages.

DaruShifa Elders’ Care Facility – A Haven for the Aged

To care for those who once had taken care of us is one of the greatest and most significant honours in life. Our elderly are the foundation of society, with a vast history and knowledge which runs through their veins, and we are privileged to spend time with them.

The DaruShifa non-profit organisation was established 4 years ago by members of the local community who saw a need to assist families with caring for their elderly loved ones. DaruShifa is also in partnership with Awqaf SA, together attempting to bring about a movement regarding elderly care in South Africa.

DaruShifa hopes to raise enough funds to purchase the elder care facility pictured above.

The most recent project DaruShifa has embarked on is ‘Assisted Living’. ‘Assisted Living’ is a lifestyle choice for an elderly person who needs a helping hand with daily activities, but doesn’t necessarily require frail care or a nursing home. To this end, DaruShifa is renting a block of flats with an option to purchase in the near future, if sufficient funds can be raised. This elderly care facility, situated in Lenasia, officially opened its doors on 1 April 2018 and is one of those compassionate places that provides a home for the aged and ailing.

The building consists of six units; each one has three bedrooms with an open-plan lounge, kitchen and dining area. Each unit can house up to five ladies and will be fully furnished for their comfort. At full capacity, they will be equipped to assist elderly 25 women. Operationally, it costs R6000 per month to house one senior patient and they readily accept sponsorships for women who cannot afford this payment. To make ends meets, DaruShifa welcomes offers of zakaat as well as monthly debit order donations.

A bedroom inside the care facility

Professionally-trained female caregivers are on site 24/7 to assist the senior inhabitants with bathing, personal grooming, medication management, massages and all caregiving-related services. The centre has additional staff to ensure it maintains a high standard of hygiene and tidiness. All meals and snacks are provided, and these have been specifically selected to be as nutritional as possible. Security is a top priority; CCTV cameras are installed, security guards are on duty around the clock, and the centre is surrounded by high walls with electric fencing.

On Friday, 13 April 2018, a pledge line was held on ITV Networks to raise the R5 million required by DaruShifa to purchase the building. With immense gratitude to the charitable public, they were able to raise R1.2 million.

Naseega Botha, vice-chairperson of DaruShifa mentioned, “We are overwhelmed by the response that we have received from the community and various businesses that has come forward thus far. The names are too many to mention. We would like to take the opportunity to thank each of them. May they be rewarded abundantly, InshaAllah, for the difference they are making to the lives of the elderly – our foundation and pillars of strength.”

The living area where the senior ladies can relax

DaruShifa is described as ‘an abode of love, care and healing’. The institution strives to provide care services for the older generations of Lenasia and greater Gauteng, making the golden years of their lives easier and more comfortable. Accommodating the aged with love and dignity, DaruShifa is an open organisation that serves all of humanity based on an Islamic ethos of kindness, goodwill and generosity.

DaruShifa provides these services:

  • Home-based care with trained caregivers to assist elderly patients recuperate from ill health and cope with daily living needs within the comfort and familiarity of their own homes.

  • Assisting elderly patients with the healing process after an operation. This temporary care service can be provided at home or in future, at their care centre. The recovery period ranges from 6-8 weeks, and is dependent on the patient and procedure performed.

  • Provision of accredited training in home-based care as a profession, conducted in partnership with St Johns Academy. This course also serves to upskill and educate members of the community who care for an elderly person at home.

  • Advice on helpful house modifications to support the mobility of the elderly person at home.

  • Counselling sessions for family members and caregivers. Debriefing is essential to maintain a healthy emotional and psychological state of being when dealing with a frail and ill loved one.

If you would like to assist DaruShifa financially in attaining their worthy goal of purchasing the elder care facility or to sponsor the care of an elderly lady, please contact Naseega Botha on 083 817 8494 or email darushifa.lenasia@awqafsa.org.za

The Adamjee Foundation Home Development Projects 2017

While a house is made of bricks, plaster and beams, a home is built from hopes and dreams.

The Adamjee Foundation fulfilled those dreams for two lucky homeowners who faced several stumbling blocks while building their residences.  

ZSS employee, Evence Maseyani has been building his house brick by heedful brick in Giyani, Limpopo, as and when he could afford to. Almost on the verge of completion, Evence battled to collect enough funds to complete the roof, and he would have had to work an entire year just to save enough money for this final piece of his dwelling. To prevent his hope for a new home to be dashed, The Adamjee Foundation stepped in and sponsored over R30 000 to cover the cost the roof. Evence was overjoyed at hearing this. Through the grace of the Almighty, he received help from an unexpected place. He and his family can now look forward to moving into their new abode.

New roofing was sponsored for Evence Maseyani’s home

Maphuti Rachabedi of Alexandra, Johannesburg, also had her prayers answered when The Adamjee Foundation pledged to improve her living arrangements. ANC ward councillor, Adolph Marema brought Maphuti’s dilemma to the attention of The Adamjee Foundation and asked if they could assist her with home renovations. Maphuti, who is well advanced in age, is unable to walk and had been living in a shack with her niece. Every time it rained, her shack flooded and she had to be physically lifted from the floor to her bed. After The Adamjee Foundation members heard her story, they decided to build her a decent house in which to live, along with her care-giving niece.

Councillor Marema sent The Adamjee Foundation a quotation based on the requirements, which included 20 bags of cement, a door and frame, concrete, plaster sand and various other building commodities. A total amount of R5600 was sponsored, thus ensuring that Maphuti has a safe and sturdy roof over her head.

To show their gratitude, Councillor Marema asked one of The Adamjee Foundation members to be present when the doors to the new home that they helped build were opened to Maphuti.

The Adamjee Foundation strives to improve the lives of those in need regardless of race and religion. Their kind contributions have given two families the most important gift this festive season; the comfort and happiness of a new home to call their own.

Nomzamo High School Begins 2018 with New Library and Computer Lab

In today’s forward-thinking society, education and technology go hand in hand. However, many schools in impoverished areas of our country don’t have the funds nor access to computers or internet services, let alone books. 

 

Muslim Hands South Africa, an NGO based in Cape Town, is on a quest to rectify this situation. They recently developed a Resource Centre at Nomzamo High School in Strand, Western Cape, which features a newly renovated library and computer lab. Over 888 students are fortunate to begin their 2018 school year with a vast collection of beneficial books and a set of PCs to help better their academic capabilities.

The Resource Centre was installed at the end of the school calendar on 5 December 2017,  and the establishment thereof is estimated to have cost R54 000. This valuable and much-needed facility will afford high school students the same opportunities other teens have – an encyclopedic gateway to a wealth of online information and a treasury of books to help expand their knowledge and improve their literacy skills.

Muslim Hands SA has successfully ticked off these objectives:

  • The provision of shelving for the library
  • The provision of computers to assist students with their learning
  • To create a reading culture
  • To give the students a chance at ownership

This new centre will encourage learners to read more, allow them to stretch their imaginations, improve their use of technology and gain knowledge from every portal of education on the world wide web. Prior to this renovation, the closest library was a 30-minute walk from the school.

Nomzamo High School was established in 2014 with a mere 200 learners in the poverty-stricken area of Strand, next to the N2 highway. Since then, it has expansively evolved with 888 enrolled students and a staff complement of 27 teachers. It prides itself on being a ‘No Fee school’

Muslim Hands SA hopes to address the complex problems of poverty and inequality of previously disadvantaged communities by focusing on the needs of the youth in schools. We commend them for their excellent work and for giving the gift of reading to such a deserving academic institution.

For more information on how you can contribute, contact Muslims Hands SA on 021 6336413 or email mail@muslimhands.org.za