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Enfield Mosque Open Days build community bridges

Emdad Rahman

AS PART OF their community outreach programme, Enfield Mosque in Ponders End opened its doors over a number of days to invite the general public to visit and learn about Islam.

Over two days the north London Mosque also hosted visits from over 300 children from seven schools, with pupils ranging from Years 3 to 10. Pupils were accompanied by over 40 teachers, classroom assistants and parent helpers.

In addition, there were just over 1,000 school pupils from nine other schools that could not be accommodated due to the high demand for and interest in the exhibition.  For these children, the Mosque has agreed to arrange special visits over the next four months, during which they will receive a special talk and hold a Q&A session with the Imam.

Twenty-eight visitors also joined the Mayor of Enfield, Joan Ryan MP, council leader Doug Taylor and many other dignitaries. Enfield North MP Joan Ryan tweeted, “A privilege to visit Enfield Mosque and see their ‘Explore Islam Exhibition’ – a wonderful initiative to show we all have more in common.”

enfield 2Imam Mohammad of Enfield Mosque said, “I think it’s been a wonderful success and we are very happy that so many people have taken up our offer to visit our Mosque and see what happens there for themselves. There’s a lot of suspicion of Muslims, and all over the country almost everyone lives within close proximity of a Mosque. I would thoroughly encourage Mosques and neighbouring residents everywhere to replicate initiatives like this to foster greater awareness, understanding and build positive relationships which benefit everyone in our communities. The feedback from visitors has been excellent and so many people have said that their perception of Islam has changed because of their first hand interaction with Muslims over the course of the last few days.”

Community activist Nurul Islam added, “I am very proud to have been part of an amazing team of volunteers who worked with so much respect for each other and in unity for one simple common goal: to bring the community closer together, regardless of their religion, and help understand the true meaning of Islam.  It was a unique opportunity to engage and enlighten with the wider community and some of the correspondence we have received has been heartwarming.”

Volunteer Abul Hussain concluded, “We are proud to be British Muslims and with so much negativity surrounding our faith in recent years it is important that the vast majority of Muslims are visible and not silenced or cowed by the actions of a few.

“It’s been a tremendous few days for us and all the volunteers have really enjoyed mingling with our visitors. The response has been so positive and we are rightly proud of how we have delivered this initiative. Islam is and Muslims are part of life in the UK and we are proud to be citizens of a country where everyone is free to practise their faith. This has inspired us to plan future outreach projects which benefit our whole community.”

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