Charity Week charts funds for its first year

Queen’s University Muslim Student Association helps raise $4,000 for orphanages worldwide

From Sept. 30 to Oct. 4, the Queen’s University Muslim Student Association (QUMSA) rallied in support of the first annual Canadian Charity Week campaign.

Charity Week, a non-profit organization started by a network of University Islamic Societies in the UK, aims to unite Muslim youth upon Islam and support social causes.

Currently, Charity Week focuses on raising money on projects for orphans around the globe.

This is the first year that it has expanded into Canada, where 10 university Muslim associations, including QUMSA, responded positively to the idea.

It works in partnership with Islamic Relief, a UK-based charity which provides financial, logistical and moral resources.

Altogether, the inaugural Charity Week campaign at Queen’s raised just over $4,000.

Faraz Naeem, the president of QUMSA, estimated that about 300 to 400 people came out to the events each day.

Throughout the week, QUMSA hosted events such as a basketball shooting contest, henna and calligraphy drawing, as well as popcorn and cotton candy sales to raise money.

Though there was a suggested minimum donation for the items being sold, QUMSA accepted all donations.

Naeem said he considers the campaign a success since more money was raised than expected, which they’re hoping will go towards providing psychological treatment for Syrian children.

He said he plans on organizing the campaign again next year, and hopes to collaborate with other clubs and committees on campus on the events.

“Next year, I want to spread more awareness about the charity itself, and make it a more global message,” Naeem said.

“These activities create a revolution in terms of unity, and removes differences when you come together on one platform, no matter what cause.” The first Charity Week campaign was held in 2004, when it raised approximately £30,000.

All the money raised by students during Charity Week fund a project that is voted on by all the participants of the campaign.

The project may be rebuilding schools in Gaza, providing health and education for girls in Bangladesh slums or building dormitories for girls in rural China.

Although Charity Week as an organization is founded on Islamic principles, Naeem said the campaign and its cause are not limited to Muslims.

“I want clubs to be more encouraged to these activities on campus,” he said.

“It promotes positivity on campus, and we can achieve much more through united effort.”


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