BRIDGE-BUILDING AND OUTREACH ACTIVITIES

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kmaherali
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Ismaili CIVIC pledge presented to The Mayor of London

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We are pleased to share that on the afternoon of Thursday 7th October, President Naushad Jivraj along with volunteers and representatives of the Ismaili CIVIC team were invited to attend City Hall in London to meet the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, to present our Ismaili CIVIC pledge of undertaking 100,000 hours of voluntary service.

During this 20 minute meeting, President Naushad Jivraj presented the Mayor with a glass plaque on behalf of the Jamat. The inscription on the plaque states: Ismaili CIVIC, on behalf of the Shia Ismaili Muslim community, pledges to undertake 100,000 hours of voluntary service to the United Kingdom; an endeavour to improve the quality of life of the communities in which we live.

This plaque will tour each Jamatkhana in the United Kingdom giving the Jamat the opportunity to see and take photos with a replica of what was presented to the Mayor.

Meeting with Ismaili CIVIC volunteers at City Hall, the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan said: “For decades the Ismaili Muslims have been a beacon for communities across the UK, and as Mayor, I am incredibly proud to have a significant presence of Ismailis living in London. The Ismaili CIVIC initiative is really inspirational and I feel privileged to accept this pledge of 100,000 hours of voluntary service as a wonderful example of active citizenship. Thank you for all you are doing in our society.”

Following the presentation, President Naushad Jivraj shared the following: "I was delighted to be able to receive the well wishes from the Mayor on behalf of all our Ismaili volunteers - recognising their hard work, dedication and commitment to serving humanity and caring for others."

We would like to extend our heartiest Mubaraki to the UK Jamat on the recognition of this wonderful voluntary seva.

Watch the video of the presentation below:

https://the.ismaili/uk/institutions/ism ... yor-london
kmaherali
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Civil Society organisations and Jamat in USA promote peace, health, and unity

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Video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RYfwkL1LCEk&t=4s

Mawlana Hazar Imam’s guidance on building bridges to understand and learn from one another, and his emphasis on local participation in the promotion of peace and pluralism served as an inspiration for two recent initiatives held in Georgia, USA.

Our Imam has often stressed the need for embracing pluralism as a key value for peace and development. In a speech delivered in 2004, at the Leadership and Diversity Conference in Gatineau, Canada, he said, “I deeply believe that our collective conscience must accept that pluralism is no less important than human rights for ensuring peace, successful democracy and a better quality of life.” He expressed his optimism that much constructive work can be done to achieve this goal.

The Ismaili Council for the Southeastern USA, in partnership with the Rotary Club of Gwinnett County, commemorated the International Day of Peace with a Peace and Unity event on 21 September 2021, with over 150 attendees representing local government, civil society, community, and faith leaders.

The International Day of Peace is observed globally every Autumn. It was established in 1981 by the United Nations General Assembly with the goal of strengthening the ideals of peace.

Wayne Ellison, President of the Rotary Club of Gwinnett County, delivered the opening remarks, and Dr Dionne Wright Poulton, Chief Diversity Officer at Care New England Health System served as the master of ceremonies. Members of the local Hindu community opened with a peace prayer, while the Honorable Mayor of Atlanta, Keisha Lance Bottoms delivered the keynote address virtually, stressing the need for equity, and highlighting that peace is indeed possible in a southern city.

Mayor Bottoms commended the Ismaili Council for the Southeastern USA for building peace and understanding in communities, as part of its wider work in civic participation. Dr Mahmoud Eboo, the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) Diplomatic Representative to Canada, also served as a distinguished speaker. Dr Eboo shared the work of the Ismaili Imamat, the AKDN, and its partners in creating an enabling environment to foster tolerance, openness and understanding, and to improve the quality of life for all regardless of faith, gender, or background.

The event closed with an interactive and engaging “call to action” exercise and discussion led by Dr Wright Poulton, followed by a recitation from the Qur’an by an Ismaili CIVIC volunteer.

More recently, on 12 October 2021, the Ismaili Council signed a letter of agreement with the American Red Cross of Georgia, which provides a broad framework for cooperation between the American Red Cross and the Ismaili Council to provide blood donations within the state of Georgia during these challenging times of need.

The agreement was signed by Salima Jaffer, President of the Ismaili Council for the Southeastern USA, and Deirdre Dixon, Chief Executive Officer, American Red Cross of Georgia.

The initiative is in line with Hazar Imam’s emphasis on strengthening civil society, and improving healthcare systems in all parts of the world.

“Civic and faith-based organisations are long standing partners in our Red Cross mission to collect and supply enough blood products for hospital patients in need,” said Ms Dixon. “We’re especially proud to add the Ismaili Council to this list of good neighbors in Georgia and thank them for their commitment to communicating both the need for blood and the space to hold blood drives in their places of worship.”

Kashif Tajani, Chairman of the Aga Khan Youth and Sports Board for the Southeast USA is responsible for the operations of future blood drives hosted by the Ismaili Council through Ismaili CIVIC. “Our community is looking forward to continuing our collaboration with the American Red Cross, applying our ethics to assist Georgians by collecting much-needed blood at our Jamatkhanas,” he said.

Alongside global efforts this year of recovering better from the pandemic for an equitable and sustainable world, the Ismaili Council and community in Georgia hope to continue their work in promoting pluralism and health in order to achieve a peaceful and united world, with improved quality of human life for all.

https://the.ismaili/global/news/communi ... -and-unity
kmaherali
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Ismaili CIVIC and Focus Humanitarian Assistance Partner with others to Support Afghan Arrivals

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City of Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner: “I am a member of the Ismaili Community...honorary!”

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Cedar Park City Council Member Anne Duffy welcomes young members of the Jamat participating in the drive.

As reports filled the news that individuals from Afghanistan, including children, would be arriving imminently in the United States, youth and young adults reached out en masse to the Aga Khan Youth & Sports Board and the Ismaili Professionals Network in the United States, asking what they could do to help.

With the relationships that the Ismaili community in several cities has established with civil society nonprofits and government entities, the Jamat was able to quickly confirm partner organizations focusing on settling families coming into the U.S., and through Ismaili CIVIC and Focus Humanitarian Assistance USA (FOCUS), was able to mobilize volunteers to support a variety of efforts.

In more than a dozen cities from Richmond to Albuquerque, and Seattle to Milwaukee, volunteers coordinated supply drives at Jamatkhanas to collect household goods, school supplies, and other items that would be immediately needed by families getting settled in a new country. Items collected would not only make our new neighbors more comfortable but would also save them from having to use their limited resources to purchase them. Moreover, the fact that these items were donated by individuals from the community, would hopefully indicate to the refugees that their neighbors welcome them with open arms.

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New Mexico Senator Ben Ray Lujan with Ismaili CIVIC volunteers at a supplies drive for Afghan refugees in Albuquerque.

In Albuquerque, United States Senator Ben Ray Lujan joined volunteers to sort and pack donations received. In the greater Austin area, Cedar Park Mayor Corbin Van Arsdale was accompanied by three other City Council members who not only donated supplies but stayed around for hours to help unload, collect, and organize donations. Like the Mayor, the City Council members who came to help, brought their spouses and children with them. Cedar Park City Council member, Jim Penniman Morin, who served in Afghanistan and brought his children to volunteer, noted:

“Those of us who served in Afghanistan ... couldn’t help but develop a real respect and affection for people who put so much faith in our values...so my family and I were so thankful to be invited to give back just a little to our newest neighbors, and hopefully start to repay that debt we owe those allies.”

At multiple drives, hundreds of cars lined up to donate goods, with individuals of all ages from the communities where these Jamatkhanas are located participating in the drive. With such an overwhelming response - more than 160 pallets of supplies were collected across the drives - several of the organizations with whom Ismaili CIVIC and FOCUS partnered, ran out of warehouse space to store the donated supplies.

Nadia Remtulla-Chunara, a parent of two young children who participated in one of the Houston area drives commented: “What I appreciated about the drives was that it made it possible for my young children to contribute and learn about serving others and welcoming our neighbors.”

In the Dallas area, FOCUS and Ismaili CIVIC not only organized multiple supply drives, including in Carrollton, Euless, and Plano, but also connected individual volunteers with refugee placement organizations.

Tasneem Devani, Chairperson of the Aga Khan Youth & Sports for the Central United States, remarked:

“We had volunteers step forward wanting not only to do something immediately but also to support families in the long term. They did not just want to donate goods, but also give of their time and knowledge and build deeper relationships with those who were arriving and do so well into the future until those families were settled here in their new hometown. We were fortunate that the civil society organizations with whom we partnered were seeking volunteers to help new arrivals find jobs, open up bank accounts, enrol in school, and get acclimated to the culture of their new country, among myriad other activities. These opportunities to serve and contribute to the quality of life of our new neighbors were a blessing for those seeking avenues through which they could assist.”

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Ismaili CIVIC volunteers at Chicago airport welcoming new Afghan arrivals

Meanwhile, in Chicagoland, in addition to drives at Chicago Downtown, Glenview, and Naperville Jamatkhanas, Ismaili CIVIC volunteers engaged young children in creating welcome cards for others their age who would soon be arriving to their city, while older youth and adults packed welcome bags. An Ismaili CIVIC volunteer, Esmael Ghaziani, had the unique opportunity, alongside other volunteers, to greet families, including children, arriving at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport.

“Being at the airport to welcome such young Afghan refugees was an overwhelming experience. In their voices, you can sense hope and a positive outlook for their future but at the same time, anxiety about what comes next and worry about their loved ones who are still back in Afghanistan. The ethics of our faith inspires us to be generous towards each other; to understand the other, regardless of religion or culture; helping to lift each other up in times of uncertainty. I headed to the airport feeling that I was going to help these young people as they arrived at their new home. At the end of my time at the airport, I realized it was them who lifted me up by showing me such resilience and bravery. This was an experience that will stay with me for the rest of my life. I am forever grateful for the experience and what it taught me.”

In the Houston area, the Ismaili Jamatkhana and Center not only hosted supply drives but also opened its doors for a partner agency to host orientation sessions for families who had arrived only a day or two earlier. While parents attended the sessions, Ismaili CIVIC volunteers organized activities and games for the young children, aiming to create a warm and welcoming environment for the children who had experienced such dramatic changes in their lives at such a young age.

In noting that Ismaili CIVIC had organized separate drives to collect supplies for survivors of the earthquake in Haiti and for families arriving from Afghanistan, on the same weekend, City of Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner commented: “I am a member of the Ismaili community...honorary!”

More photos:

https://the.ismaili/usa/ismaili-civic-a ... n-arrivals
kmaherali
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Building Bridges: Exploring the Stepping Stones of Culture

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Mawlana Hazar Imam has always emphasized maintaining good relations with other communities, and a workshop and film development series in the Central region were organized with this thought in mind in May 2021.

Under the theme “Building Bridges,” six events highlighted Muslim cultural heritage and its connection to organizations in Texas. This is a collaboration between the Aga Khan Council for the Central US, the University of Texas at Arlington (UTA) Department of Art + Art History, the UTA College of Architecture, Planning, and Public Affairs, and Maverick Film Productions. The Building Bridges project seeks to bring awareness to aspects of Muslim cultural heritage and the connections that exist between these and the UTA community.

The collaboration hoped to “...make connections between what we’re looking at and what we have here in Texas, because that’s the whole point of building bridges,” said Douglas Klahr, a professor of architectural history at UTA and one of the partnership’s organizers. “We’re building a bridge between your life today in Texas...and what you’ll be studying from around the world.”

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UTA Associate Dean Douglas Klahr describes the goal of Building Bridges to the students.

The program focused on architecture, design, and urban life to make deep, real-life connections for the UTA community and people around the world. It highlighted the Aga Khan Trust for Culture’s work in the Historic Cities Programme and the Aga Khan Award for Architecture.

Professor Klahr challenged the participants during the first session to share their documentary film pitches. They were required to fully develop these by the end of the series, after which they would be reviewed by a selection committee. Four of them, once chosen, will continue forward in a process to be properly produced and aired on Ismaili TV, later this year.

“Here’s a date on it, the material construction of it, but it doesn’t tell you why it was made, who it was made for, why it was relevant to those people.” Dr. Hussein Rashid, a panelist who studied Islam at Harvard University noted while discussing the social context of Muslim architecture in museums.

The five different dialogues from the panelists focused on architecture, its impact on society, and how it ties into Islamic history. The organizers provided thought-provoking questions for each day that the speakers elaborated on, giving insight from their own work and experience.

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Dr. Hussein Rashid talks about the importance of history.

“It’s very little about architecture, but it’s more about what spaces are doing for human societies,” remarked Khalil Pirani, a senior architect for over 25 years, who has moderated discussions on the Aga Khan Award for Architecture, referring to a park in Copenhagen that received the Award.

Khalil also expanded on the idea of the award being a process as well as a value system. This recurring theme of the significance of architecture as a means of expression was repeated by the speakers in many ways, using different pieces of architecture, personal experiences, and history to emphasize their points.

At the end of the day, this workshop helped embody something that Mawlana Hazar Imam has talked about time and time again: pluralism. Building Bridges helped stimulate the intellect, encouraged dialogue, celebrated cultural diversity, and fostered an appreciation for pluralism.

Pics at:

https://the.ismaili/usa/building-bridge ... es-culture
kmaherali
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Ismaili CIVIC Leicester | Arts drive

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Last month (October 2021), Ismaili CIVIC Leicester ran a donation drive with Leicester Jamatkhana to collect arts-related items, for distribution across eight Children’s wards within the University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust.

A donation of nearly 500 items were made on behalf of the Leicester Jamat to the Children’s Hospital which is based across two sites - the Leicester Royal Infirmary and Glenfield Hospital.

The Leicester Royal Infirmary provides care for a range of conditions such as cancer and emergency situations such as breaking a bone. Glenfield Hospital is a specialist centre treating children with heart conditions and other specialist surgery and treatments. The Children’s hospital has a team of play specialists that lead activities and use play as a therapeutic tool for all the long and short term patients

Sadly, the Children’s hospital lost their budget for art supplies, a few years ago, and have been getting supplies through the Leicester Hospitals Charity.

The Ismaili CIVIC Leicester team along with the Leicester Jamat were able to support the hospital in providing the necessary art supplies (ranging from paper, paint, pencils and arts and crafts), as requested by the play specialists, to support both inpatient and outpatient care.

Kirsty Murdock, a Play Specialist at the Leicester Children’s Hospital said:

“Thank you for your generous donation Ismaili CIVIC UK team, we are thrilled to have your support. Through your donation we have been able to provide art and craft activities for the children/young people that attend our hospital both long term and short term. You have truly made a difference to us and we are extremely grateful.”

As with all Ismaili CIVIC projects, this was the first of a long term partnership with the University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust and the Ismaili CIVIC Leicester team.

If you would like to get involved in our Ismaili CIVIC activities, please register to become an Ismaili CIVIC volunteer through your family dashboard at iiuk.org.

https://the.ismaili/uk/institutions/ism ... arts-drive
kmaherali
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2021 Share Your Holidays Food Drives at the Ismaili Jamatkhanas in both Sugar Land and Spring, Texas

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Video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0xVizH4EkL4
kmaherali
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Global Ismaili Civic Day: A Global Weekend of Service to Humanity

Volunteers around the world came together to participate in various activities to showcase environmental stewardship and to provide pandemic relief to commemorate the inaugural Global Ismaili CIVIC Day 2021.

Global Ismaili CIVIC Day brought together tens of thousands of volunteers – old and young alike – in collaboration with civil society partners to benefit millions of people around the world. Displaying our ethics in action, the weekend of service marked another chapter in our centuries old tradition of contributing to the societies in which we live.

The dual crises of Covid-19 and climate change require collective and coordinated action. We live in a world which increasingly demands positive engagement and participation. Today's challenges, by their very nature, require us to alter our actions, to change our behaviour to protect those most vulnerable whether they live in our neighborhoods, or on the other side of the world. These challenges cannot be solved individually or in isolation. Tackling them requires us to reach out beyond our own comfort zones to work with the communities and societies in which we live.

“We inhabit an overcrowded planet with shrinking resources, yet we share a common destiny,” said Mawlana Hazar Imam in a speech in Ottawa in 2004. “A weakness or pain in one corner has the tendency, rather rapidly, to transmit itself across the globe. Instability is infectious! But so is hope! It is for you – the leaders of today and tomorrow – to carry that torch of that hope and help share the gift of pluralism.”

In 2017, the ethos of volunteerism, engagement, and citizenship motivated the Canadian Jamat to pledge 1 million hours of voluntary service on the occasion of Mawlana Hazar Imam’s Diamond Jubilee, and to coincide with the 150th anniversary of Canada’s confederation. The pledge was built on the foundational idea that as Ismailis we are not only members of a global community, but are also active citizens and members of the nations in which we reside.

Global Ismaili CIVIC Day

Following on from this pledge, Ismaili CIVIC became a global initiative in 2020 and this year saw the first ever Global Ismaili CIVC Day at the end of September 2021. It was a weekend in which Ismaili communities from across the world, from Tanzania to Tajikistan, from Canada to Kenya, and from the UK to the UAE gathered to contribute to the betterment of their communities by engaging in acts of volunteering and service.

The focus of this year’s Global Ismaili CIVIC Day was responding to the Covid-19 and climate crises. Over 30,000 volunteers in 30 countries engaged in over 600 activities, contributing hundreds of thousands of hours of service. To place this in perspective, it would take a single person working 24 hours a day, seven days a week, more than 15 years to contribute the same amount of time.

Global Efforts

Across the world, these efforts were made possible in partnership with an extensive array of civil society organisations. The Ismaili community partnered with over 150 new and existing partners including Plant a Tree Australia, the World Wildlife Foundation (WWF), International Tree Foundation, Mission Save Bangladesh, United Way, Keep Britain Tidy, Project Mares Circulares, Seastainable, and Liga Para a Protecao de Natureza among many others.

In Pakistan, Ismaili CIVIC pledged to plant one million trees to supplement Pakistan’s Ten Billion Tree Tsunami Initiative, earning accolades from the country’s Federal Minister Malik Amin, who remarked, “Climate change is one of the biggest threats facing the world including Pakistan. However, the Ismaili CIVIC Pakistan tree plantation initiative is, no doubt, of paramount significance that would support the country’s largest-ever afforestation programme.”

In Tanzania, volunteers planted 1,000 trees in Dodoma, supported 18 fish market food vendors in Mwanza, and supported 4,000 school students. Tanzanian Minister of State, Union, and Environment, Selemani Jafo, acknowledging the efforts, remarked that the “environment is the key issue for our country’s development goals, not only to improve the lives of Tanzanians today but for generations to come.”

In India, in response to the ongoing pandemic, Ismaili volunteers organised a blood donation drive at the Fidai Girls Institute in Andheri, India, responding to the urgent shortage of blood banks reported by the government hospitals over the course of the Covid-19 health emergency.

In the UK, 100,000 hours were pledged to the city of London and in the US, the flag was flown at the Capitol to commemorate Ismaili CIVIC. Meanwhile in Canada, Ismaili CIVIC volunteers along with members of Toronto’s police force collected supplies for children, youth, and recently arrived refugees from Afghanistan. The Mayor of Toronto, John Tory, expressed his pleasure at visiting the donation drive and his appreciation for the community’s spirit of generosity.

Through the Jamat’s collective efforts -– and in the face of the challenges posed by Covid-19 – Ismaili CIVIC has developed new and lasting partnerships and received numerous gestures of praise and acknowledgements from governments and opinion-makers around the world.

CIVIC events continue across the year as Ismailis in neighbourhoods, towns, and cities across the world strive to improve the quality of life of their communities. Looking around the world we come to understand that acts of citizenship are not relegated to annual or one-off events but must be sustained as part of everyday life – and in these acts, we find a sense of hope and common belonging.

https://the.ismaili/global/news/communi ... e-humanity

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Calgary’s Muslim community comes together to support victims of domestic violence

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Volunteers sort through donations to support women and children fleeing domestic violence Dec. 3, 2021. Global News

Calgary’s Ismaili community is stepping up to help women and children fleeing from domestic violence.


For the last month, Ismaili: CIVIC has been collecting donations of toys and essential items for various shelters in recognition of Family Violence Prevention Month.

On Friday, the group got together with members of the Calgary police diversity and domestic violence units to sort through what’s been collected.

Calgary police respond to approximately 30,000 domestic violence calls every year and shelter space and a need for resources is growing.

The pandemic has brought that need into the spotlight.

“Dynamics for families and individuals have changed with the reduction in movement, reduction in ability to socialize,” said Sgt. Garry Woods. “There’s an increase in use of substances whether that’s alcohol or drugs, and I think all those things… certainly it’s going to impact the mental health of people as well, so all those factors will contribute to not only domestic violence but other crimes as well.”

Volunteer Aleesha Daya said the outpouring of support has been incredible.

“I’m actually in awe that, in this pandemic we have actually donated so many items and we have helped so many people and we are all one humanity and we need to, in the future, remember that.”

The donations will be distributed to shelters across the province.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

https://globalnews.ca/news/8424513/calg ... -violence/
kmaherali
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Mubaraki to the Jamat on receipt of a letter from the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Boris Johnson, dated 13 December 2021.

Within this letter, the Prime Minister recognises the “Ismaili Muslim community’s ethic of civic engagement and good citizenship, exemplifying Islam’s core values of service, peace, compassion and care for the vulnerable”.

The Prime Minister also accepts Ismaili CIVIC and the Jamat’s pledge to undertake 100,000 hours of voluntary service to the United Kingdom; an endeavour to improve the quality of life of the communities in which we live.

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kmaherali
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Global Ismaili CIVIC Day in the Central Region

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“We’re so pleased that in Plano and all over the world, today is Ismaili CIVIC Day. We are a diverse city, and these kinds of efforts are what make our community so great. We thank you for what you do for the community and for the world, and for Plano.” These were remarks made by John Muns, Mayor of Plano, Texas.

Global Ismaili CIVIC Day was recognized by cities of Dallas, Plano, Carrollton, Grapevine, Euless and Colleyville, where proclamations were made by respective mayors recognizing Ismaili CIVIC.

Ismaili CIVIC is a global program under which the Shia Ismaili Muslim community across the world has united around its centuries-old tradition of serving humanity by rendering voluntary service to improve the quality of life of the communities in which they live, regardless of faith, gender and background.

This international endeavor reflects the community’s ethic of civic engagement and good citizenship, exemplifying Islam’s core values of service, peace, compassion, and care for the vulnerable.

September 26, 2021, was Global Ismaili CIVIC Day around the world, where the global Ismaili community united to engage in community service. The theme of the inaugural day in the United States was “Environmental Stewardship.” In the Central Region, nine events took place with partner organizations that share our core values.

One of these organizations was Groundworks Dallas. Alex Marquard, Director of the organization, described its mission. “The biggest thing that we do is change lives and change places. We create access in the Elm Folk and the Trinity River for the citizens of Dallas, and the citizens outside of Dallas, to come to enjoy this area while still getting to work with the at-risk and homeless youth in the area of teaching them land conservation.” Other events included tilling community gardens that provide food for those in need, cleaning up shorelines, rivers and parks, and much more.

Years of serving the community were commemorated with other guests such as Kevin Falconer, Mayor of Carrollton, Texas, who said, “We are so proud in Carrollton to be home to an Ismaili Jamatkhana. Over my years in public service, my wife Susan and I have grown to love our Ismaili neighbors, and we, as people of faith, have an appreciation for what you all do, and you are so involved in your community. As a community leader, that means so much to me.”

https://the.ismaili/usa/global-ismaili- ... ral-region
kmaherali
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Re: BRIDGE-BUILDING AND OUTREACH ACTIVITIES

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Giving blood, gifting life

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Ismaili CIVIC Portugal hosted a blood donation campaign today at the Ismaili Centre in Lisbon. The Portuguese Minister for Health and Prince Hussain attended the pop-up clinic, organised to boost blood reserves in the country.

Em Português

Service and volunteering have long been part of Ismaili tradition, as has the recognition of the sanctity of human life. In the Qur’an, it is stated that “Whoever saves a life, it will be as if they saved all of humanity.” (5:32)

With blood reserves in Portugal running at their lowest level in many years, Ismaili CIVIC identified an unique opportunity to contribute to society in a meaningful way. A pop-up clinic in the Ismaili Centre’s social hall could offer members of the Jamat and the general public a space to donate blood in a safe and serene environment, and the chance to save a life.

In partnership with the Portuguese Institute for Blood and Transplantation (IPST) and the local parish of ​​São Domingos de Benfica, the event was organised to coincide with National Blood Donor day, held on 27 March every year. IPST’s medical staff donated their time on a voluntary basis to be part of the project.

Dr Marta Temido, Portugal’s Minister for Health was welcomed to the Ismaili Centre by Prince Hussain, and spoke of her admiration for Ismaili CIVIC volunteers.

“Today, we are marking an initiative of the Ismaili Community in Portugal and the IPST in order to appeal for donation and to mark tomorrow's Blood Donor day,” she said.

As part of the campaign, Dr Marta joined 75 others on the day by donating blood herself, and appealed for further eligible donors to do the same.

A consistent supply of blood is essential to any nation’s health system. In Portugal, hospitals request 800-1000 units of blood for transfusion every day for childbirth, surgeries, and the treatment of diseases like sickle cell anaemia, some cancers, and for accidents and injuries.

“Today I met many health professionals, volunteers, and donors,” Dr Marta continued, “and I thank those who continue to support the blood reserves in Portugal.”

For patients who rely on regular transfusions, a disruption to the supply can be a matter of life and death. According to the Red Cross and Red Crescent, one blood donation can save as many as three lives.

“Giving blood is giving life,” said Marco Marques, who visited the Ismaili Centre in Lisbon to give blood for the first time.

“It was a pleasure to participate - something I've been thinking about for a few years,” Mr Marco continued. “The medical team were attentive and informative, and the process was quite tranquil and painless.”

“This feeling of sharing made me come here and I think it's important that we are all concerned with building a better world and saving as many lives as possible.”

The Covid-19 pandemic has led to an escalating demand for blood, along with a reduced supply, due to remote working and learning negatively impacting regular blood drives. In addition, growing numbers of regular donors testing positive for Covid-19 have had to cancel scheduled donation appointments. More than 60 per cent of today’s donors were offering blood for the very first time.

For these reasons, Portugal’s health service representatives were grateful to Ismaili CIVIC and its partners for organising today’s initiative.

“Thank you for your strong support,” said Dr Maria Antónia Escoval, President of IPST. “We need more blood, more young people. The patients are thankful as this helps save more lives.”

Anyone is eligible to give blood, provided they are fit and healthy, and within a particular age and weight group, depending on country guidelines. It is safe to donate approximately every 12-16 weeks.

Volunteer Karim Rahimo has donated blood on separate 3 occasions in the last year.

“I am a regular donor because I feel it is my civic duty, and it doesn’t cost me anything,” he said. “It feels very good to donate as part of a global initiative via Ismaili CIVIC - I usually donate in other contexts but it feels even better to do so with my community.”

More photos:

https://the.ismaili/global/news/imamat- ... fting-life
kmaherali
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Dorna Centre & Aga Khan Donate to Children with Autism

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In Summary

"Autism is a neural development disorder characterised by repetitive behaviour, mood alterations, impaired social interactions and difficulties in communication."

On Friday 29th April, 2022, the Aga Khan Foundation with funding from the European Union (EU) teamed up with Dorna Centre – Home for Autism to donate foodstuffs and home use items such as soap to families of children with Autism around Kampala.

The activity that took place at Dorna Centre along Muwafu Curve in Ntinda, a Kampala Suburb, was part of the activities done by the partners in commemoration of the World Autism Awareness Month. The World Autism Awareness Day falls on April 22nd every year.

Among the donated items were bars of soap, maize flour, beans and sugar that were distributed to families of children with autism from all over the divisions of Kampala.

Speaking at the donation activity, Olga Namukuza the Programme Manager - COVID-19 project at the Aga Khan Foundation said the activity was just a representative ceremony of greater giveaways they have been doing and intend to keep doing.

She implored Ugandans to interest themselves in knowledge about people living with autism and help fight related stigma for better living.

“We are making a deliberate effort to sensitize the population about people living with autism. We are targeting general community members especially men because we have seen that many fathers abandon their children when they find out that they have autism. We need to ensure that the community supports people living with autism to enable them have a positive life.” Ms Namukuza told Capital FM.

“Children with autism are stigmatized in society because people don’t have information. People are ignorant about what children with autism look like and what kind of needs they need. Many times, they just sum it up and conclude that the child was bewitched without knowing that the child just has a medical condition that needs attention.” She added.

According to Ms Namukuza, the project that the Aga Khan Foundation with funding from the European Union (EU) is implementing with Dorna Centre is worth 48,000 Euros and will run for a year.

Ms Dorothy Nambi, ED at Dorna Centre appreciated the donors for stepping in to help children living with autism and called on more stakeholders including government to interest themselves with people living with autism to avail them a better life.

“We appreciate the Aga Khan and European Union for helping us in this sensitization campaign and awareness on people with autism.” She said.

According to Dr Richard Idro, a paediatric neurologist in the Department of Paediatrics and child health at Makerere University College of Health Sciences, autism is a neural development disorder characterised by repetitive behaviour, mood alterations, impaired social interactions and difficulties in communication.

Children with autism have delayed speech, find trouble expressing their needs and emotions, tend to stay alone, do things alone and cannot look people in the eye. They also have rotative behaviour, follow routines, do things repetitively and love semblance of most of the things and any change agitates them.

“If a child is diagnosed with autism, the area of the brain responsible for concentration attention, speech and memory is damaged,” he says.

One symptom of autism is the delay in speech and if they attempt to speak, the speech may not be contextual and often times, it is a repeated statement copied from another person. Some children become nonverbal or their speech is faulty.

While there is no cure for autism, according to Dr Idro, there are several effective interventions that can improve a child’s functioning. Applied behavioural analysis, social skills training, speech and language therapy and other interventions help children with autism to create a structured behavioural plan for improving their adaptive skills and decreasing inappropriate behaviour, improve their ability to navigate social situations as well as speech.

https://capitalradio.co.ug/news/latest/ ... th-autism/
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Gujarat Ismailis Celebrating Gujarat Titans IPL Victory

Post by kmaherali »

Narendra Modi Stadium Tata IPL Final GT vs RR People Dancing on Ismaili Diamond Jubilee Sanedo song

Video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B1cTvJ_-9LA
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2022 StampEid Breakfast

Post by kmaherali »

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2022 StampEid Breakfast

Description

Dust off your boots and break out your hat and join us with your colleagues, neighbors and friends on July 9, 2022 from 11:00 am – 1:30 pm at Headquarters Jamatkhana for our annual "StampEid" Breakfast! Please download and share this invite https://iicanada.org/sites/default/file ... Invite.pdf .

This year our Stampede Breakfast coincides with Eid al-Adha, the Muslim festival of sacrifice. Many of us have sacrificed a great deal during the pandemic which has certainly taken a toll on the mental health of our communities. This year we are proud to partner with the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) in our shared commitment to caring for our mental well-being. As always, we will be serving up our famous breakfast and bharazi, this year with a special sweet Eid treat – jalebi!

Be sure to look out for our stunning float dedicated to this year's partner during this year's Stampede parade on July 8th!

Yahoo!
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US Senator Mark Warner visits Richmond Jamatkhana

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Senator Warner meets Afghan and other Richmond Jamati members.

U.S. Senator Mark Warner visited Richmond Jamatkhana to learn more about the Ismaili community and the resettlement effort of Afghan refugees. The Virginia senator met with National Council President, Al-Karim Alidina and Northeast Council President, Aly Alibhai, on May 14, 2022 to better understand who the Ismailis are and discuss issues facing the community locally and across the United States. Senator Warner also addressed roughly fifity Jamati members and heard personal stories of recently-settled Afghan refugees.

Since America’s withdrawal from Afghanistan, Senator Warner has pushed the Biden administration to ensure the safety of Afghans who worked closely with the U.S. government. He voted in favor of $915 million in humanitarian assistance for Afghanistan and has repeatedly called for additional funding to address humanitarian needs in Afghanistan and globally.

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Senator Warner with Jamati members

In President Aly’s welcoming address, he said, “While many of the first members of our community came from Africa, India, Pakistan, and Syria, many of the new members have ties to Afghanistan…they’ve been able to add to the diverse mosaic that we see in Virginia.” He stressed the importance of civil society and governments working with communities, like the Ismailis, for the betterment of society.

Acclaimed Chef Hamidullah Noori, attended the event and shared his experience of moving to the America. In 2019, Chef Noori opened Mantu, a restaurant in Richmond, Virginia, specializing in Afghan food. Mantu restaurant has fed nearly 3,000 meals to Afghan refugees at Fort Pickett.

The event concluded with Senator Warner touring the newly opened Richmond Jamatkhana and observing an Early Childhood Development class in session. He expressed his sincere appreciation and looks forward to furthering ties with the Ismaili community.

https://the.ismaili/usa/united-states-s ... jamatkhana
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Dedicated to His Highness the Aga Khan in honor of his 65th year as Imam

Post by kmaherali »

The flag flying atop the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C. today is dedicated to His Highness the Aga Khan in honor of his 65th year as Imam of the Ismaili Muslim community. This honor was bestowed upon the community by Senator Ben Lujan of New Mexico.
#ImamatDay65

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https://twitter.com/TheIsmailiUSA/statu ... 1777077248
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StampEid Breakfast draws thousands for first post-pandemic restrictions celebration

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Organizers say more than 7,000 people attended Ismaili Muslim community event
CBC News · Posted: Jul 10, 2022 9:29 AM MT | Last Updated: July 11

According to organizers, more than 7,000 people took part in the StampEid breakfast event. (Axel Tardieu/CBC)

Calgary's Ismaili Muslim community hosted its annual StampEid breakfast, but this year it coincided with the Islamic holiday Eid al-Adha.

The holiday, known as the "Festival of Sacrifice," is often marked by communal prayers, large social gatherings and giving to those in need.

According to organizers, an estimated 7,000 people attended this year's free StampEid event on Saturday. It is the 25th year the event has been put on, only taking a break during the pandemic.

Visitors were offered drinks and the sweet treat jalebi, bharazi (pigeon peas in a coconut-based sauce), crepes and toasts.

"It's a wonderful day today. we've got lots of warm weather, lots of crowd with lots of smiles," said Alisha Kanji, one of the event organizers and member of the Ismaili Council of the Prairies.

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Music, games for kids and mascots were all part of the menu at the 25th annual StampEid breakfast organized by the Ismaili community in Calgary. (Axel Tardieu/CBC)
As the Islamic calendar is based on a lunar calendar, Eid al-Adha shifts dates each year. And as this year's edition of Stampede rolled around, it presented organizers with a new opportunity to unite traditions.

"We were starting to notice that a lot of our Muslim festivities were starting to coincide with Stampede and so it's really important to us to understand how we bring the Stampede traditions that we are creating — this being our 25th one — and our cultural traditions to come together," Kanji said.

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'We have a lot of people and a lot of smiles here,' says volunteer Alisha Kanji. (Axel Tardieu/CBC)
After a two-year pandemic hiatus, the celebration this year returned with extra vigor within the community.

"This is our first Stampede breakfast since COVID but, you know, coming together for Eid is something that's very important," Kanji said.

"We have about 250 volunteers who really do dedicate their time and their efforts to make this Stampede breakfast possible, everything from the logistics, to the planning to the service of the food. Service is very important to the Ismaili community, but it's also a great opportunity to have the external community to come and volunteer with us today."

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About 25 volunteers helped put on the annual Ismaili StampEid breakfast, according to organizers. (Axel Tardieu/CBC)
For attendee Tasleem Kurji, the breakfast is about reconnecting with others.

"It's a time to celebrate with your family, friends, the community," she said. "It's a remembrance of your faith and who you are. It brings you back to your ethics, diversity, pluralism, family.

It's fantastic. It's nice to see everyone coming together again."

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Stampede and Eid are about reconnecting with family and tradition, says Tasleem Kurji. (Axel Tardieu/CBC)
The "Festival of Sacrifice" coincides with Hajj, an annual Islamic pilgrimage to Mecca in Saudi Arabia, the holiest city for Muslims.

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calgary/ ... -1.6516124
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Putting Faith in Plurality

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Interfaith group tours Atlanta Headquarters Jamatkhana and helps prepare Care packages

In Atlanta Headquarters Jamatkhana on a Sunday afternoon, a group of Ismail CIVIC volunteers stands huddled in the entryway to the anteroom. A splay of chairs sits clustered together over the ochre-pink carpet with its repetition of patterns. Seated in rapt attention is a medley of people hailing from a multitude of faiths and beliefs, including Sikhs, Hindus, Muslims, Christians, and Jews.

This medley isn’t, however, incidental. The crowd, in large part, is affiliated with an organization called Interfaith Atlanta, a local group whose self-stated mission is: “...Promoting understanding, respect, prayer, interaction, and unity among the diverse faiths in the greater Atlanta region, and advanc[ing] the influence of voices of the faith communities for the common good.”

From the podium, President Salima Jaffer delivers an impassioned speech about the intricacies, significance, and power of pluralism in both religion and humanity, citing evidence from the Qur’an and an excerpt from a speech by Mawlana Hazar Imam: “Pluralism does not mean the elimination of difference but the embrace of difference,” she quotes.

At her periphery, volunteers stand ready to part the group of approximately sixty participants, from school-age children to older adults – into two groups that will be led separately for a guided tour of the Jamatkhana grounds, during which they’ll learn about Islam and also trace similarities among different faiths.

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Interfaith Atlanta Youth Board members tour the Ismaili Jamatkhana in Atlanta to celebrate the plurality of religion.
RAMZAN QASSAMALI

In the Religious Education Center, the group filters into the view of posters displaying the Ismaili Centers built throughout the decades, ending with the Ismaili Center Houston. Attendees huddle around as one of the presenters, Shelina Merchant, highlights the purpose of the Centers – to bring pluralism into action and create a space where people from all walks of life, cultures, and convictions, can convene and carry a conversation while embracing our oneness as humanity.

The symbolism behind different elements of the centers’ architectures is highlighted, such as the significance of green space to depict our oneness with nature and the reflection of images in water structures, such as ponds and fountains, symbolic of self-reflection and paradise.

The Jamatkhana’s brightly-lit library – reflecting the quest for knowledge Mawlana Hazar Imam encourages us to embrace as a lifelong process – overflows with books of all sizes and shades. The attendees thumb through titles eagerly, exploring the literature available for young and old. “Remember,” Shelina advises the crowd, “Knowledge is only useful if it is accessible.”

The courtyards hold splendor in the sunlight, seen in the expressions of the spectator taking in the red brick facade, fountains, and tiles, with awe.

In the Prayer Hall, a hush falls over the crowd as they stare at the intricately carved wood panel comprising the front wall, illuminated by light from within. Chris Ray Alexander, a member of the Interfaith Atlanta Youth Board, draws in the ambiance. “What I find here,” he says, “Is a deep, tactile atmosphere of peace and an all-pervading warmth that is not something I necessarily always associate with entering into a religious space.”

As the tour draws to a close, the volunteers touch on the cornerstone of the Ismaili faith: service to others. Volunteers from Ismaili CIVIC take the stage, explaining that service propels us to build better futures for our families but also for our communities. A key tenet of the Ismaili faith, they elaborate, is ensuring that the success and good fortune we seek for ourselves and our loved ones is also accessible and within reach for others — irrespective of faith or belief.

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Ismaili CIVIC and Interfaith Atlanta members work together to compile care packages for Afghan refugees as a service activity at the Atlanta Headquarters Ismaili Jamatkhana.
RAMZAN QASSAMALI

To demonstrate the type of work Ismaili CIVIC engages in, volunteers encourage attendees to lend a hand in the day’s designated service activity: compiling care packages with basic necessities for Afghan refugees.

The care packages are split into two distinct Ziploc bags – one that will carry hygiene essentials families require when arriving in the U.S., including soap, toothpaste, Band-Aids, and sanitary pads. The other will hold non-perishable items reminiscent of favorite staples from back home, to deliver a sense of familiarity and belonging to refugee families: apricots, cinnamon sticks, green tea, and cardamom.

“When we started, there were about twenty families we were serving,” says Ikram Ali, a lead volunteer with Ismaili CIVIC. “Today, there are over sixty.” The statement is indicative of the dire need and value of groups such as Ismaili CIVIC that lend assistance to the broader community in line with Mawlana Hazar Imam’s vision for outreach to assist the underprivileged.

The day concludes with a closing speech, a group photo, food, and networking among the volunteers and attendees. The infusion of merriment in the air, coupled with the ease with which the crowd exchanges dialogue, underscores the value of such events in establishing that plurality, indeed, can be a strength and not a divider, paving the way for greater understanding and friendships.

“There are a lot of stereotypes when it comes to religion,” says Noor Mehdi, a new member of Interfaith Atlanta. “It’s nice to see people acknowledging people for who they are and not which religion they belong to. If you educate people, you remove divisive barriers and make way for them to come together in respect.”

More photos at:

https://the.ismaili/usa/putting-faith-plurality
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Ismailis lead the march of communities to celebrate 76th Independence Day

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Mumbai News
Updated on Aug 17, 2022 04:02 PM IST

Drumbeats resonated in their hearts even as their fingers flew on the bagpipes

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Scouts from Khoja Ismaili community (HT PHOTO)

These children predominantly belong to the Ismaili (Khoja Muslim) community, registered with the Bharat Scouts and Guides musical band, which had organised a parade with members of diverse communities to commemorate the 75th Independence Day anniversary on Monday.

A lane in Hasnabad came alive as around 150 members from the community marched from Aga Khan 1 Hasan Ali Shah mausoleum at Mazgaon. They offered the first traditional “salami” to the national flag and the Bharat Scouts and Guides flag here.

The fervour on display inspired members of other communities to join in as well, as the scouts marched from Hasnabad to Maharana Chowk junction, where they saluted the statue of Maharana Pratap.

The Ismaili community has had a time-honoured tradition of enrolling kids as scouts and guides, who eventually play in a band. This, observed a member of the community, on condition of annonymity, is in keeping with the community’s spirit of volunteerism. “It teaches them to go beyond themselves and work for others. With their sense of individualism riding high, the scouts and guides put others before themselves, which prepares them to face the world better,” he said. He added that the kids are enrolled at three when they are taught different life skills.

“We instil discipline and confidence through camps, which helps dispel their stage fright. All these skills are a crucial part of the training and indeed become essential life lessons,” he added.

The spirit of togetherness and brotherhood among communities was also on display in a rally organised by Vishwas Utagi and Jamat-e-Islami Hind, where over 1000 residents, predominantly Muslims, Buddhists, Sikhs, Jains, Hindus and Christians, joined in a solidarity march in Dadar (West).

Fr Frazer Mascarenhas, parish priest, at St Peter’s church in Bandra who participated in the rally told HT, “We are celebrating 75 years of our independence but our freedom can never be taken for granted. So, it does look like we need to defend the constitution and secular values, and dignity for every Indian citizen.” Fr Mascarenhas expressed concern towards the increasing polarisation of people in the country. “We are people from different religious backgrounds and we stand for the constitution and are ready to defend it,” he added.

Fr Calistus Fernandes, of Our Lady of Salvation, commonly called the Portuguese church in Dadar added, “It isn’t a religious festival. It is our country’s festival today. We are experiencing a decay in the freedom we used to enjoy. We need to strive towards four goals of the UN -- freedom of speech, freedom from division, wants and fear. I would like to remind people through this rally that we need to protect this freedom and remain fearful.”

Bhikshu Vidhaten Mather, president, Bhiku Sangh Mumbai, a Buddhist monk, too joined the rally along with other monks from his tribe to stress on various issues faced by the scheduled castes and tribes. They walked from Veer Kotwal Garden, near Plaza Theatre to Chaitya Bhoomi in Shivaji Park.

Shabbir Bhopalwalla, representative of Dawoodi Bohra community in the central PR department, who represented his community, said, “People from all faiths lived in harmony in the past and will continue to do so. The Bohra community firmly owes its allegiance to the country they live in. We consider it our duty. Bohras in other countries will remain loyal to the country they live in but we as Indians will always be loyal to India.”

Santok Singh Rathore, who represented the Sikh community, expressed, that the objective of this march was to display a spirit of oneness among all religious groups.

“We have gathered here to stress that our Independence has come from various communities’ contribution. There has been equal participation from all,” he said.

https://www.hindustantimes.com/cities/m ... 28978.html
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75 Minutes, 75 Activities: Girl Guides Celebrate Pakistan Independence Day 2022

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As the nation celebrated Pakistan’s 75th Independence Day with enthusiasm, the Ismaili Girl Guides rejoiced in the day by continuing their legacy of voluntary work. 1,800 Ismaili Girl Guides across Pakistan showed their love and patriotism for the country by indulging in social action and community service giving 6,500 minutes on 75 different projects, benefiting more than 3,500 people, reflecting on the multiple themes of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set by United Nations to address global issues and challenges.

The idea that girls can serve their communities in inventive ways forms the basis of Girl Guiding. The purpose of the World Association for Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS) is precisely aligned with the goal that every girl who has joined the Guiding movement has always given back to society and done their part as an engaged citizen. Moreover, Girl Guides are urged to channel the attitude of generosity and put their philanthropic intentions into action by taking part in a variety of community service initiatives that may be brief in nature or ongoing.

In keeping with the legacy of voluntarism, the Ismaili Girl Guides demonstrated their devotion on Pakistan’s 75th Independence Day under the Ismaili CIVIC initiative. These projects covered a wide range of services including plantations, beach cleaning, recycling, providing free medical camps and celebrating Independence Day with elderly, differently abled, orphans, minorities, traffic police and many others. These activities help to improve society directly whilst sparking the Guides' civic sense of responsibility.

Social Entrepreneurship

Small-scale businesses are prevailing networks in Pakistan and for the sustainable growth of the economy, small-scale businesses contribute tremendously. On their visit to small-scale industries, the Girl Guides in Hunza spent time ensuring quality conversations with multiple entrepreneurs, actively shared marketing growth strategies for prosperity and certified to support local markets on Pakistan’s 75th Independence Day. This activity exhibited how important it is for a person to be socially, intellectually and culturally developed. The concept was imparted upon our Guides and they intend on transmitting the same ideology to their community.

Environmental Sustainability

To prevent the depletion or degradation of natural resources and to ensure long-term environmental quality, environmental sustainability is the responsible engagement with the environment. Environmental sustainability is a practice that makes sure that current demands are addressed without endangering the ability of future generations to meet their requirements. Similarly, on their visit to different locales, the Girl Guides from the extreme south to the extreme north contributed to environmental sustainability. From installing dustbins to cleaning massive parks, along with promoting the eco-friendly concept of recycling and reusing, Guides made an inclusive impact on the ideologies of people. From young children to adults, everyone participated enthusiastically regardless of gender and age. Similarly, developing the concept of global sustainability, the Girl Guides contributed to healthy marine life by cleaning water waste. This event left behind a perpetual effect on how to save our Earth from the hands of catastrophe.

Good Health and Wellbeing

As Mawlana Hazar Imam has always emphasised living a healthy lifestyle, the Girl Guides of different regions of Pakistan emerged to support the free medical camps. This included helping paramedic staff, assisting the Jamat with their health and encouraging the Jamat to partake in recreational activities as part of their daily physical health. Furthermore, the stigma is against mental illness was addresses. In order to cope with the challenges individuals may be facing, the Girl Guides conducted sessions on Mental Wellbeing and its significance in the modern world, as well as how to recognise issues or ask for assistance.

The Girl Guides of Pakistan were highly dynamic and proficient in giving something new to their homeland on the 75th Independence Day. They conferred upon their country fixed assets which will later liquidate into fruitful outcomes. From changing obstructive mindsets to bringing forth the true ideology of devotion, the Pakistan Ismaili Girl Guides left behind the paradigm of staunch patriotism and humanity.

More photos at:

https://the.ismaili/pakistan/our-commun ... e-day-2022
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Global Ismaili CIVIC Day

Post by kmaherali »

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In 2017, on the occasion of Mawlana Hazar Imam’s Diamond Jubilee, and the 150th anniversary of Canada’s confederation, the Canadian Jamat pledged 1 million hours of voluntary service in the ethos of volunteerism, engagement and citizenship. The pledge was built on the foundational idea that, as Ismailis, we are not only members of a global community, but are also active citizens and members of the nations in which we reside.

Following on from this pledge and building on several similar initiatives in other countries, Ismaili CIVIC became a global undertaking in 2020 and saw the first ever Global Ismaili CIVC Day at the end of September 2021. It was a weekend in which Ismaili communities from across the world, from Tanzania to Tajikistan, from Canada to Kenya, and from the United Kingdom to the United Arab Emirates gathered to contribute to the betterment of their communities by engaging in acts of volunteering and service.

This year, Global Ismaili CIVIC Day will be held on the weekend of September 24-25 and will bring together tens of thousands of volunteers – old and young alike – in collaboration with civil society partners to put our ethics into action and continue the centuries-old tradition of contributing to the societies in which we live. This year's theme is protecting our planet and our ethic of environmental stewardship. Volunteers will take part in tree-planting, restoration projects and city and park clean-ups.

Visit the Global Ismaili CIVIC Day page https://iicanada.org/programs-services/ ... c-day-2022 to register for a service event in your city!
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Re: BRIDGE-BUILDING AND OUTREACH ACTIVITIES

Post by kmaherali »

As received..

To UK MKs only
For announcement on Sunday 11th and Monday 12th September

Announcement from Ismaili CIVIC

Following the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, the Ismaili community has been contacted to offer voluntary service in supporting with the large numbers of visitors arriving in London to pay their respects over the next two weeks. Volunteering shifts will take place across a range of key locations throughout Central London supporting the Floral Tributes, Welfare Centres as well as support at key transport hubs to support visitors with wayfinding.

If you would like to volunteer, a link has been sent to the Jamat via email from Jamati Mukhisaheb and Kamadianisaheba. You will need to create a profile on this link after which you will be asked to sign up to a one-hour training session at various times on Monday 12th and Tuesday 13th September. Once you have completed your training, you will be notified of your volunteering shift where you are encouraged to wear your Ismaili CIVIC t-shirts or arm bands.

Thank you in advance to anyone that signs up for this incredible opportunity. Once you have been allocated your duty, please email hrd@iiuk.org with the details of your allocation and remember to log your hours under the Ismaili CIVIC pledge on The Ismaili app.
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Ismaili CIVIC assists with flood-relief efforts in Pakistan

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Hundreds of Ismaili CIVIC volunteers, in collaboration with the Aga Khan Boy Scouts, are providing relief to the flood-affected areas in Pakistan.

As rehabilitation efforts continue in Pakistan, Ismaili CIVIC volunteers continue to support affected individuals and the communities in which they reside – demonstrating a commitment to Islam’s core values of service, peace, compassion and care for the vulnerable.

Devastating record floods in Pakistan have displaced 33 million people, with the death toll reaching 1500. Hundreds of villages have been inundated, sweeping away acres of farmland and impacting vulnerable communities. It may be months before the water recedes, reminding all about the rising threat of climate crises that communities – especially vulnerable communities – are experiencing globally.

Flood relief activities included evacuating affected communities and airlifting supplies. Community response teams were mobilised, and displaced families were relocated to Jamatkhanas, schools, camps and host families.

A relief camp was set up by volunteers in the Ishkoman Puniyal region in Northern Pakistan after heavy floods in Ghizer washed away many homes. Hundreds of Ismaili CIVIC volunteers, in collaboration with the Aga Khan Boy Scouts, supported the villagers by providing relief to the affected areas at the camp.

Relief efforts were also carried out in Sindh, distributing food and other supplies. De-watering efforts continue in residential areas in Karachi, located in the Southern part of Pakistan and communities in interior Sindh.

“The spirit of volunteerism is high on the ground,” commented Gul Nayab Shah, one of many Ismaili CIVIC volunteers. “Despite the devastation, our volunteers have provided relief and support to the flood-affected communities. Elders were provided care while being shifted to the temporary shelters and relief camps established by the Government and AKDN. Everyone, including youth, Scouts, and Guides, came together as part of their civic responsibilities.”

The Ismaili Imamat has also announced a donation of US$ 10 million to support relief efforts following the severe flooding in Pakistan. Prince Rahim, Chair of AKDN’s climate committee said, “I am deeply concerned about the impact of the current floods in Pakistan, which have been intensified by the effects of climate change. These floods, and the many other weather events we are experiencing around the world, require us all—governments, businesses, communities, and individuals—to redouble our efforts to combat the climate crisis which threatens to engulf us. The institutions of the Ismaili Imamat have been mobilised to support the government in its relief and rehabilitation efforts.”

On 25 September 2022, in light of this year’s Global Ismaili CIVIC Day (GICD) theme, many volunteers will come together to combat the impact of climate change by engaging in activties to preserve, improve, and maintain our environment. Share your events and activities by tagging @TheIsmaili and using the official hashtag #GICD2022.

https://the.ismaili/global/news/communi ... s-pakistan
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The Citizen Tanzania (@TheCitizenTz): Ismaili community renews commitment on climate action

Post by kmaherali »

BY ISMAILIMAIL POSTED ON OCTOBER 12, 2022
Monday, October 10, 2022
By Josephine Christopher, business reporter for The Citizen and Mwananchi newspapers

Dar es Salaam. Tanzanian members of the Ismaili Community have expressed their commitment to taking action against climate change, and have established a micro forest to spearhead the climate action movement.

Dozens of community members planted approximately 165 seeds and 200 tree saplings from 25 different tree species and shrubs at the Aga Khan Foundation Tanzania office yesterday in Dar es Salaam.

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Image: Josephine Christopher

An Ismaili leader, Mr Hussein Somji, said the community understands the urgent need to take action against the impact of climate change which is now evident in Tanzania.

“These issues have escalated mainly due to human activities. We can vividly witness air pollution and changes in rainfall seasons, among others,” he said.

Mr Somji added that mini-forests were a hyper local response and solution to a large-scale environment challenge, adding that the initiative would be rolled out to other several locations.

Mr Mehboob Kassam said the initiative was also a way of giving back to the community.

“Because impacts of environmental challenges hit everyone in our society, this is one of the methods to reduce the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, and thus reduce the speed of climate change,” he said.

The Aga Khan Foundation Tanzania through its flagship project Schools2030 is committed to balancing the greenhouse gas and carbon emissions.

From the Aga Khan Foundation-Canada office, Ms Getrude Omoro said the foundation was supporting the initiative as part of its ongoing commitment to carbon negative activities.
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Community takes focus as Trudeau and Smith flip pancakes in Calgary

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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, centre, cooks pancakes as he attends a Stampede pancake breakfast in Calgary, Saturday, July 8, 2023. (Jeff McIntosh/The Canadian Press)

Politics and pancake breakfasts can make for strange bedfellows.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Alberta Premier Danielle Smith shared the podium Saturday as they both attended a Stampede pancake breakfast put on by the Ismaili Muslim community.

The two leaders have had a somewhat frosty relationship but shook hands prior to a private meeting Friday where they discussed Alberta's concerns about emission reductions, the goal of establishing a net-zero electricity grid by 2035 and the ongoing strike among British Columbia port workers.

"It's great to be here with Premier Smith. Thank you Danielle for your leadership," Trudeau said in his opening remarks at the breakfast.

The two didn't appear to have any time to chat.

"I'd like to thank the prime minister for his comments," Smith said in response.

WATCH | Trudeau flips pancakes at Stampede pancake breakfast
VIDEO


Trudeau flips pancakes at Calgary Stampede breakfast
21 hours ago
Duration0:27

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau took part in a Stampede tradition on Saturday, a day after a brief meeting with Alberta Premier Danielle Smith where the two discussed carbon emissions and the strike by B.C. port workers.

'A debt of gratitude' to the Ismaili community

Instead of politics, the two leaders focused on the impact the Ismaili community has had on Canada since members began settling here en masse more than 50 years ago.

Trudeau said Ismailis still approach him to express their gratitude for the work his father, Pierre Elliott Trudeau, did in bringing members of the community to Canada in large numbers.

"It is much more true that my father and I and Canada owe you a debt of gratitude. Not just for what you've contributed to this country but for being a shining example of what welcoming people who are fleeing violence, persecution, fear can do," he said.

"When we welcome in refugees, we are not only giving them opportunities. We are enriching our country so deeply from everything this community has done in Canada."

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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau attends a Stampede pancake breakfast in Calgary, Saturday, July 8, 2023. (Jeff McIntosh/The Canadian Press)

Smith also heaped praise on the Ismaili community for its generosity.

"This Stampede breakfast is more proof of your generosity which knows no bounds," she said.

"It's not limited by faith or culture or colour and has marked Alberta deeply. Every day you change lives by volunteering, improving education and practicing social responsibility."

Poilievre's hometown politics

Federal Conservative leader Pierre Poilievre also attended the event and took photos with the crowd.

Later on Saturday morning, Poilievre was at Marlborough Mall for Calgary Forest Lawn MP Jasraj Singh Hallan's pancake breakfast, where he addressed the crowd in a campaign-style speech.

He talked to the crowd about policies including cutting the carbon tax, lowering income taxes and strengthening Alberta's oil and gas industry.

Poilievre also criticized Trudeau's leadership through the last eight years.

"Life costs more, work doesn't pay, housing costs have doubled, crime, chaos, drugs and disorder are common in our streets," Poilievre told the crowd.

"Some of my best memories were when I had one of my first jobs, picking up garbage at the Stampede … and now we actually have to clean house on Parliament Hill and in Ottawa as well."

Poilievre was born in Calgary to a 16-year-old single mother. He was adopted by Francophone school teachers and raised in the city, where he found his political affiliations at the University of Calgary.

A man shaking hands with a young person.
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Federal Conservative leader Pierre Poilievre takes photos with the crowd at MP Jasraj Singh Hallan's pancake breakfast. (Helen Pike/CBC)

A spokesperson for the federal NDP said party leader Jagmeet Singh has no plans on coming to the Stampede this year but did not say why.

Alberta NDP leader Rachel Notley will be part of the party's pancake breakfast on Monday, a spokesperson confirmed.

Rallying support
Trudeau spent a short time flipping pancakes at the Ismaili Muslim community's event before heading to his own second breakfast of the morning at an event hosted by Liberal MP George Chahal.

A huge crowd was on hand to hear the prime minister's second speech which took a more political turn.

"The reality is George needs reinforcements, and I really much hope over the coming years we're going to elect more members of Parliament from the Liberal party for Alberta," Trudeau said.

Canadian astronaut Jeremy Hansen leads parade as Calgary Stampede kicks off
Prime Minister Trudeau holds brief meeting with Alberta Premier Smith in Calgary
He also urged those listening to continue working toward making Canada better during these trying times.

"The world is facing tremendous challenges right now. Whether it be war returning to Europe, the destabilization of the world with energy prices and food prices, whether it be climate change having an increasing impact including on the wildfires," Trudeau said.

"There's a lot of reasons to feel anxious and worried about the future, but there are also so many reasons to be optimistic and positive and ambitious about the country we get to build every single day."

Trudeau was swarmed after his speech by people seeking photos and autographs or wanting to shake his hand.

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calgary/ ... -1.6901266

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‘A debt of gratitude’: Trudeau thanks Ismaili community at Calgary Stampede breakfast

CALGARY - Politics and pancake breakfasts can make for strange bedfellows.

By Bill Graveland The Canadian Press
Saturday, July 8, 2023
2 min to read
Article was updated 18 hrs ago

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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, centre, walks the grounds of the Calgary Stampede in Calgary, Friday, July 7, 2023.
Jeff McIntosh / THE CANADIAN PRESS

CALGARY - Politics and pancake breakfasts can make for strange bedfellows.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Alberta Premier Danielle Smith shared the podium Saturday as they both attended a Stampede pancake breakfast put on by the Ismaili Muslim community.

The two leaders have had a somewhat frosty relationship but shook hands prior to a private meeting Friday where they discussed Alberta’s concerns about emission reductions, the goal of establishing a net-zero electricity grid by 2035 and the ongoing strike among British Columbia port workers.

“It’s great to be here with Premier Smith. Thank you Danielle for your leadership,” Trudeau said in his opening remarks at the breakfast.


The two didn’t appear to have any time to chat.

“I’d like to thank the prime minister for his comments,” Smith said in response.

Instead of politics, the two leaders focused on the impact the Ismaili community has had on Canada since members began settling here en masse more than 50 years ago.

Trudeau said Ismailis still approach him to express their gratitude for the work his father, Pierre Elliott Trudeau, did in bringing members of the community to Canada in large numbers.

“It is much more true that my father and I and Canada owe you a debt of gratitude. Not just for what you’ve contributed to this country but for being a shining example of what welcoming people who are fleeing violence, persecution, fear can do,” he said.

“When we welcome in refugees, we are not only giving them opportunities. We are enriching our country so deeply from everything this community has done in Canada.”

Smith also heaped praise on the Ismaili community for its generosity.

“This Stampede breakfast is more proof of your generosity which knows no bounds,” she said.

“It’s not limited by faith or culture or colour and has marked Alberta deeply. Every day you change lives by volunteering, improving education and practicing social responsibility.”

Federal Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre also attended and spoke at the event and planned to attend a pancake breakfast and a party barbecue later in the day.

Trudeau spent a short time flipping pancakes before heading to his own second breakfast of the morning at an event hosted by Liberal MP George Chahal.

A huge crowd was on hand to hear the prime minister’s second speech which took a more political turn.

“The reality is George needs reinforcements, and I really much hope over the coming years we’re going to elect more members of Parliament from the Liberal party for Alberta,” Trudeau said.

He also urged those listening to continue working toward making Canada better during these trying times.

“The world is facing tremendous challenges right now. Whether it be war returning to Europe, the destabilization of the world with energy prices and food prices, whether it be climate change having an increasing impact including on the wildfires,” Trudeau said.

“There’s a lot of reasons to feel anxious and worried about the future, but there are also so many reasons to be optimistic and positive and ambitious about the country we get to build every single day.”

Trudeau was swarmed after his speech by people seeking photos and autographs or wanting to shake his hand.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 8, 2023.

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Re: BRIDGE-BUILDING AND OUTREACH ACTIVITIES

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As received:

Celebrating Canada's strength in diversity! Our Ismaili Muslim community's float won the Best Creative and Innovative Award at the Stampede parade this morning. Proud moment for everyone involved! #IsmailiStampede
kmaherali
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Re: BRIDGE-BUILDING AND OUTREACH ACTIVITIES

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Annual Ismaili Muslim Stampede Breakfast highlights how traditions combine at the Calgary Stampede

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Dignitaries give out a big yahoo during the 27th annual Ismali Muslim Stampede Breakfast at the Calgary Jamatkhana on Saturday, July 6, 2024. ARYN TOOMBS / FOR LIVEWIRE CALGARY

Visitors to the Ismaili Muslim Jamatkhana on the morning of July 6, wouldn’t have been able to turn their heads without seeing one of Western Canada’s major dignitaries or VIPs.

Such is the reputation, and importance, of the annual Ismali Muslim Stampede Breakfast—now in its 27th year—that it has become one of the most important cultural and political events of the Stampede season.

That importance has come through the hard work and volunteer spirit of the Ismaili Muslim community of Calgary itself, which has for decades, and in some cases generations, prided themselves on their participation in the Calgary Stampede- this year with more than 300 volunteers.

“What it means for our community is it allows us to show and allow other people to experience the values that we have as Ismaili Muslims: the values of diversity, pluralism, and the ethos of volunteerism and giving back to the community that has given so much to us,” said Salima Kassam, a volunteer with the Ismaili Muslim Community.

“How we’ve managed to interweave into the fabric of Calgary and society and Canadian society really speaks to who we are as a community, and a chance to show that and embrace others is so monumental for us.”

Many of the first generation of Ismaili Muslims in Calgary came to Canada as refugees after then-dictator of Uganda Idi Amin expelled people of south Asian descent from that nation in the early 1970s.

The community has prospered in Calgary, and first entered a float into the Calgary Stampede in 1986. The community began hosting a Stampede Breakfast in 1997.

“For over 50 years we’ve been in Canada now. So we’ve had a really lovely opportunity to establish ourselves, and people have accepted us and we have accepted society at large as well,” said Kassam.

“Having the chance to come together and to show people who we are to be with our neighbours and to invite our neighbours to this breakfast, and open our doors so that people have a really good window into who Ismaili Muslim community people is so important to us.”

The annual breakfast includes a variety of traditions, including the traditions of the west with pancakes and eggs, and the east with bharazi, which is pigeon peas cooked in a coconut sauce.

Decades long connection to Calgary Stampede

Calgary Stampede President Will Osler said that the annual breakfast was great on so many levels.

“The Stampede is happening not just on Stampede Park, and that’s fantastic. It also means that all these communities are doing what we do, or trying to do, at the Stampede, which is create community,” he said.

“It’s a fixture on our calendar. There’s a bunch of Stampede people here, the food is fantastic, and it’s just one more side of Stampede that some people might not know about. We love their support, we love what they’re doing, and we love being a part of it.”

He said that there was a real synergy between the culture of the Calgary Stampede and the Ismaili Muslim community with the spirit of volunteerism.

“Volunteerism is a real feature of this community. They’ve been doing it for a long time, and they support so many crosses in the community. At this breakfast, there are 400 volunteers here, and That’s incredible. I think pound for pound that’s way more volunteers we have at the Calgary Stampede for sure.”

Among the dignitaries to attend this year’s breakfast were Lieutenant Governor Salma Lakhani, Alberta Premier Danielle Smith, leader of the Alberta NDP Naheed Nenshi, multiple Alberta Ministers including Minister of Justice Mickey Amery, Mayor Jyoti Gondek, Couns. Gian-Carlo Carra and Kourtney Penner, and Calgary Fire Chief Steve Dongworth.

From the federal government Minister and President of the Treasury Anita Anand was joined by Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Official Languages Randy Boissonnault.

Centre for Newcomers CEO Anita Umar, whose organization was the partner for this year’s Ismaili Muslim Stampede Parade float, was also in attendance.

“We’re so grateful to the Ismaili Muslim community to welcome us as the Center for Newcomers, to help us welcome the 80,000 newcomers we are projected to see this year. It is astounding. We have grown by leaps and bounds, and to the number of people seeking refuge in Canada,” she said.

Photos from the 27th annual Ismali Muslim Stampede Breakfast

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Premier Danielle Smith meets with dignitaries and visitors to the Ismaili Muslim Stampede Breakfast at the Calgary Jamatkhana on Saturday, July 6, 2024. ARYN TOOMBS / FOR LIVEWIRE CALGARY
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Calgary’s Mayor Jyoti Gondek speaks to past chair of the Calgary Police Commission Mike Shaikh at the Ismaili Muslim Stampede Breakfast at the Calgary Jamatkhana on Saturday, July 6, 2024. ARYN TOOMBS / FOR LIVEWIRE CALGARY
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Dignitaries greet each other at the Ismaili Muslim Stampede Breakfast at the Calgary Jamatkhana on Saturday, July 6, 2024. ARYN TOOMBS / FOR LIVEWIRE CALGARY
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Former Calgary Mayor and Leader of the Alberta NDP Naheed Nenshi greets community members at the Ismaili Muslim Stampede Breakfast at the Calgary Jamatkhana on Saturday, July 6, 2024. ARYN TOOMBS / FOR LIVEWIRE CALGARY
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Ameerally Kassim-Lakha, President of the Aga Khan Council of Canada speaks at the Ismaili Muslim Stampede Breakfast at the Calgary Jamatkhana on Saturday, July 6, 2024. ARYN TOOMBS / FOR LIVEWIRE CALGARY
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Canada’s President of the Treasury Board Anita Anand speaks at the Ismaili Muslim Stampede Breakfast at the Calgary Jamatkhana on Saturday, July 6, 2024. ARYN TOOMBS / FOR LIVEWIRE CALGARY
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Calgary Stampede President Will Osler speaks at the Ismaili Muslim Stampede Breakfast at the Calgary Jamatkhana on Saturday, July 6, 2024. ARYN TOOMBS / FOR LIVEWIRE CALGARY
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Centre for Newcomers CEO Anita Umar speaks at the Ismaili Muslim Stampede Breakfast at the Calgary Jamatkhana on Saturday, July 6, 2024. ARYN TOOMBS / FOR LIVEWIRE CALGARY
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Visitors get a variety of traditional foods at the Ismaili Muslim Stampede Breakfast at the Calgary Jamatkhana on Saturday, July 6, 2024. ARYN TOOMBS / FOR LIVEWIRE CALGARY

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