Press Release: Task Force GLM raises almost £1M for global humanitarian crises over Ramadan 2021Assima Alam
Ramadan is best known for long fasts that begin at dawn and end at dusk. Muslims this year fasted for a staggering 16 hours every day. What many people may not know is that besides fasting, Ramadan also encourages an increase in charitable efforts. According to a Give Brite survey, £150 million was donated in 2020 in the month of Ramadan alone.
Green Lane Masjid’s humanitarian arm Task Force GLM (TFGLM) were more active than ever this Ramadan. They worked closely with local charity partners like Islamic Relief and One Ummah and were able to oversee the distribution of aid at home and abroad.
In one TV fundraiser this Ramadan, over £130,000 was raised and pledged for GLM’s bread factory project in Syria. This bakery provides bread twice a day for over 28,000 individuals. That’s over 11 tonnes of flour baked daily!
This Ramadan, the TFGLM team also campaigned live from refugee camps in Lebanon while personally distributing Iftar food parcels and handing out freshly cooked hot meals to those living in refugee camps. It is a sad reality that those living in refugee camps often do not get to break their fasts in the evening, as they have nothing to eat. Thankfully, a total of 2000 families received fresh iftar meals that we provided this Ramadan.
The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: Allah said:
“Spend in charity, O son of Adam, and I will spend on you.”’
Liakat Younis, volunteer head of projects for Task Force GLM commented:
“These people live in remote, isolated areas and in dire conditions. It’s nice to share the spirit of Ramadan with them and to reassure them that we haven’t forgotten them.”
The team were last in Lebanon in December 2020 for their Winter Freeze project. On this trip, essential winter clothing and food were distributed to refugees which would last them 5 months. Almost half a million pounds was raised.
Ramadan 2021 also saw two radio appeals on Unity FM, a local Birmingham radio station with UK wide coverage. The first appeal raised almost £20,000 for babies in Yemen. The money will be used to buy peanut paste; a life-saving meal for malnourished children who are on the brink of death. The paste is used for children who need high calorific intake to increase their weight but are unable to absorb normal food due to their critical condition.
The second radio appeal raised almost £30,000 for the displaced Rohingya people in Myanmar (former Burma). The people of Myanmar were forced to abandon their homes, and camp in remote areas of the Rakhine state. The money will help build wooden shelters – homes for families and a source of protection during the coming monsoons.
Over the past year, there has also been a conscious effort by the Taskforce to focus on UK projects too. Just in February, the team partnered with Islamic Relief to distribute over 2,000 meals to the homeless and vulnerable on the streets of Birmingham. In 2020, the team also embarked on a project led by local doctor Arslan Amjad, working with the Home Office to sponsor and oversee the relocation of a Syrian Refugee family to Birmingham.
Mohammed Saeed, Chair of Trustees commented: “The Taskforce is one of the major projects of Green Lane Masjid. This year they have managed to serve the UK community as well as overseas recipients, in a period where people’s needs had been exacerbated by covid. We have a team of highly qualified volunteers who have been using their experience from their day jobs and industry to establish key projects. For example, this year they have been proactive in significantly reducing costs through tenders, to increase the amount of aid that is distributed to the recipients.”
Over Ramadan 2021 alone, TFGLM raised close to £1M for those suffering around the world. Ramadan has shown – and continues to show – the generosity of the Muslim community. The masjid foodbank continues to serve the community, with a range of both Muslim and non-Muslim service users. In fact, over 65% of our foodbank users are non-Muslims, highlighting how our vast number of services are accessible by all.
Looking at how much goes on, it is no wonder that Muslims in the UK are collectively able to raise £150 million pounds in donations this Ramadan!
Green Lane Masjid
Green Lane Masjid and Community Centre is a leading UK mosque situated in the heart of Birmingham serving the community since 1979. Operating from its award-winning grade II listed Victorian building, GLMCC fulfills its mission of inspiring, educating and serving through its educational college, outreach work, welfare services, international humanitarian wing, as well as its fully functional mosque which is attended by thousands every week.