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    hisnameiszzz's Avatar
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    Food Banks, Eid Presents and Refugees

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    Hi all,

    Just a few quick questions for you all. Apologies if I am generalising....

    What is the fascination with Muslims and food banks? They have a few Muslim food bank services in my area and all the Mosques tend to do a food bank drive in Ramadan. I ask this because I work with people who use food banks. They no longer spend money they get from Universal Credit on food and drink because they know where they can go for food and drink and handouts so they spend the money on alcohol and drugs. One of my clients clearly tells me he will go to x location on Monday and they will give him a burger, chips and a goody bag which will last him until Wednesday when y location will do the same and on Friday he knows he can go to z for further handouts. Now this is me generalising because I am sure there are genuine users (people who are sanctioned by Universal Credit and are absolutely destitute) but 99% of the people I work with are addicts and openly say they will spend their money on vices. Now don't get me wrong, I understand that Islam talks about helping the poor and being generous but surely this should not be for people who take advantage of this? I could be completely wrong but I am just airing my views.

    Also, I understand the generosity and nicety of collecting money and then distributing Eid presents for non Muslims but why does this take preference when there are other causes out there where they money and help would be of much better use?

    This brings me to refugees. There has been a huge influx of refugees in my area, it's been advertised quite loudly in newspapers and it's evident when you are out and about in town. Why are there no "do-gooders" or Muslim agencies or mosques helping them? I've worked with a couple of refugees and families from various Middle Eastern countries who have now converted to Christianity. In their own words, they have said that the only people who help them are Christians and Churches and they are good people. Now people might be taking advantage of them but if these people are the only ones helping them out, I can sort of see where they are coming from.

    Now don't get me wrong, I am not religious, in fact, I no longer have a faith but I do feel it's quite awful that these poor people are being taken advantage of like this.

    What would be more important to you? Donating to food banks where the majority of people will take advantage of it? Putting money towards Eid presents for non Muslims? Or creating some sort of drop in at a mosque or a centre for refugees where a volunteer or an Imam or someone sits down with them and has a chat with them and gives them a bit of kindness and help? I'm not saying giving them money but just making a phone call to an agency like Universal Credit or something for them or just giving them a bit of support and a shoulder to cry on?

    Also, does anyone know of any Muslim agencies where the refugees can be signposted to? If in Yorkshire, this would be preferable.

    Thanks to anyone who might be able to help.

    - - - Updated - - -

    PS. Sorry if I am not allowed to post in this section if I am no longer following a faith but I just wanted to get it off my chest.

    PPS. A lot of the churches round here have events solely for refugees where they all get together and have chit chats and have little food parties where they all bring food and get to know each other. I'm just surprised no mosque has joined in on this. Am I missing something?
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    Physicist's Avatar
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    Re: Food Banks, Eid Presents and Refugees

    Perhaps there is something regarding islamophobia and migrantophobia pressure issues is out there.

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    Re: Food Banks, Eid Presents and Refugees

    There are over a thousand food banks and despite what your clients may have told you, I think you are being unfair to generalise most of the people who use them. People who benefit from them can include those with illness, disability, family breakdown and loss of a job. They mention some real stories on their websites and they talk about people like Josh who was starving for about a week before asking for help from the food bank, and had the opportunity to sit down and chat with the volunteers. And people like Richard who used to work in the police force but due to health problems and other issues, was left without enough money for food. In his own words, he said, 'the volunteers were fantastic, offering a chat and a shoulder to cry on.' So it seems food banks are not as bad as you may think. They are also an easy way for everyone to contribute, such that even school-children have participated in such projects, whereby they can learn about social responsibility, helping others and develop a greater understanding of poverty.

    It should also be pointed out that food banks simply represent one way that Muslims try to tackle the problems in society; it is not the only thing we do. Muslim groups have helped out during times of crisis such as the floods in Cumbria, and they are working alongside various charities to help homeless and elderly people. Islamic Relief is one charity which supports people from from refugee, asylum-seeking and migrant backgrounds. Non-Muslims are regularly invited to visit and interact with Masjids, and they are invited for Iftar meals there. There are a number of social activities and even on Eid, outdoor gatherings are held for the whole community where refugees and isolated people can interact and connect with others.

    The couple of refugees and families you worked with may have converted to Christianity, but don't forget it is estimated that thousands of people convert to Islam every year in the UK. You need to look at things in perspective, and not make assumptions that there are no 'do-gooders' or Muslim agencies or Masjids helping people.

    I am sorry to hear you no longer have a faith. I cannot imagine how that would help to resolve your problems; on the contrary, it would only add to them. I ask Allah to guide you, Aameen.
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    Food Banks, Eid Presents and Refugees




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    Re: Food Banks, Eid Presents and Refugees

    greetings and peace be with you hisnameiszzz;

    Sorry if I am not allowed to post in this section if I am no longer following a faith but I just wanted to get it off my chest.
    People mostly hear the bad stuff about religion, most of the good things that happen within religions seem invisible to the outsiders. If you feel passionate about Muslims doing more for refugees where you live, first pray, then do something. It takes one person to start a project, why can't it be you.

    We had one lady locally who had a passion for homeless people, she prayed over a number of years, she talked to people, did things and because of her we now have two houses for homeless people in our town. She had no money, but she had the vision.

    In the spirit of striving to do the impossible with the help of Allah,

    Eric
    Food Banks, Eid Presents and Refugees

    You will never look into the eyes of anyone who does not matter to God.

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    M.I.A.'s Avatar
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    Re: Food Banks, Eid Presents and Refugees

    Quote Originally Posted by hisnameiszzz View Post
    Hi all,

    Just a few quick questions for you all. Apologies if I am generalising....

    What is the fascination with Muslims and food banks? They have a few Muslim food bank services in my area and all the Mosques tend to do a food bank drive in Ramadan. I ask this because I work with people who use food banks. They no longer spend money they get from Universal Credit on food and drink because they know where they can go for food and drink and handouts so they spend the money on alcohol and drugs. One of my clients clearly tells me he will go to x location on Monday and they will give him a burger, chips and a goody bag which will last him until Wednesday when y location will do the same and on Friday he knows he can go to z for further handouts. Now this is me generalising because I am sure there are genuine users (people who are sanctioned by Universal Credit and are absolutely destitute) but 99% of the people I work with are addicts and openly say they will spend their money on vices. Now don't get me wrong, I understand that Islam talks about helping the poor and being generous but surely this should not be for people who take advantage of this? I could be completely wrong but I am just airing my views.

    Also, I understand the generosity and nicety of collecting money and then distributing Eid presents for non Muslims but why does this take preference when there are other causes out there where they money and help would be of much better use?

    This brings me to refugees. There has been a huge influx of refugees in my area, it's been advertised quite loudly in newspapers and it's evident when you are out and about in town. Why are there no "do-gooders" or Muslim agencies or mosques helping them? I've worked with a couple of refugees and families from various Middle Eastern countries who have now converted to Christianity. In their own words, they have said that the only people who help them are Christians and Churches and they are good people. Now people might be taking advantage of them but if these people are the only ones helping them out, I can sort of see where they are coming from.

    Now don't get me wrong, I am not religious, in fact, I no longer have a faith but I do feel it's quite awful that these poor people are being taken advantage of like this.

    What would be more important to you? Donating to food banks where the majority of people will take advantage of it? Putting money towards Eid presents for non Muslims? Or creating some sort of drop in at a mosque or a centre for refugees where a volunteer or an Imam or someone sits down with them and has a chat with them and gives them a bit of kindness and help? I'm not saying giving them money but just making a phone call to an agency like Universal Credit or something for them or just giving them a bit of support and a shoulder to cry on?

    Also, does anyone know of any Muslim agencies where the refugees can be signposted to? If in Yorkshire, this would be preferable.

    Thanks to anyone who might be able to help.

    - - - Updated - - -

    PS. Sorry if I am not allowed to post in this section if I am no longer following a faith but I just wanted to get it off my chest.

    PPS. A lot of the churches round here have events solely for refugees where they all get together and have chit chats and have little food parties where they all bring food and get to know each other. I'm just surprised no mosque has joined in on this. Am I missing something?
    Our lives are our own.

    I agree with you that some people take advantage of the systems in place to help people who are struggling.
    And some people are too set in self destructive behaviour to be able to be helped.

    But at the end of the day, even the people you meet are in some way by the will of Allah swt.

    So basically if you cant do good yourself, then give it to people you consider to be doing good.. by your own standards.

    Logic.

    I met so many homeless people and people on the wrong end of life.. but it's so difficult to give or receive change. So I can understand.

    It's like in my own experience I had a shop in a mostly Asian Muslim area.. I struggled for 3 years and really it was always giving just under enough.

    In the end it made me feel resentment for the place I grew up in, not because of any one person in particular.. simply because of how it happened.

    I dont hold grudges, it was a learning experience. It gave me a new perspective on my faith.

    Now I work in a predominantly "non muslim" company, although I am still Muslim..

    It has made me feel less open to judge..

    Although time will tell..

    You cant blame people for converting to christianity if those are the people who are helping..

    The intention you give to them may not be entirely accurate and they could probably label all your efforts as if talking with your voice.

    .. And this is a concept many people dont understand.


    I hope you find Islam again.

    ...maybe become a scientist.. at lease science only works one way.

    I'm kidding.


    ..hope your nieghbours stopped banging doors.

    And I dont recall reading about how your court case against the religious Muslim guy that ripped you off went.

    Life is tough when people are so willing to live without a second thought.


    So achieving peace in your own head is a constant goal.

    ..Or trying to go back to a time of not caring.. whatever that means.


    But for every story we could tell, there's someone who could tell it better..

    Today anyway.

    Although it would be like explaining your life in a paragraph.


    ..not entirely accurate.
    Last edited by M.I.A.; 06-07-2019 at 11:46 AM.
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