As moms with families we all have seen backlash, ignorance and hatred South Asian communities can face post events like Charlie Ebdo in Paris, Sikh Temple shootings in Wisconsin and terrorist shootings in Ottawa, Canada. Have you ever faced racism? How have you explained it to your kids? One community is taking making it a priority to be proactive to dispel myths about their religion and culture.
The Ahmadiyya Muslim community has launched an outreach campaign called ‘Meet a Muslim Family‘ across Canada, in order to help dispel myths about the religion. With the recent terrorist attacks around the world and in recent months in Canada, organizer, Safwan Choudhry said it was an opportunity to get other Canadians to meet average Muslim families.
The campaign has been launched at several mosques across the country and the community has set up a website called “Meet a Muslim Family” where individuals can provide their basic information to be matched with a family living close to them. Meetings are happening in homes, in coffee shops and some people have requested visits to mosques.
Choudhry says the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama`at in Canada has been hosting this program for many decades, but this year was the first time we decided to name it “Meet a Muslim Family” and launch it as a national campaign.
And the feedback has been incredible, says Choudhry.
Many families reported that they had reconvened several time since the initial meeting and have developed a strong bond of friendship.”
“Perhaps some of the community members and readers may have misunderstood the concept.
We are inviting Canadians to meet Muslims living in Canada, and have created a platform for people to voluntarily signup to either host or meet Muslim families,” said Choudhry.
In a country like Canada, where multiculturalism is the backbone of its legacy, is this program necessary? Choudhry says yes.
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