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Sunday, 30 May 2021

Gaza Food Fair

 When ‘HANDS International’ and ‘Palmers Green Mosque’ decided to take action for Gaza in our community by holding our Gaza Food Fair, we didn’t expect to uncover such a hurtful undertone in our community, as well as a deep desire of wanting to contribute. 

Yes, as many other charities aimed, we also wanted to raise humanitarian funds for the beautiful people of Gaza who have been affected by recent events. However, during the process of planning for the event over the past 8 days, we uncovered the underlying hurt, the heartache, the sympathetic pain almost, the determination and resolve to outwardly demonstrate the connectivity through ummah, essentially the brother/sister-hood that was being felt in our community after recent events. As ‘HANDS International’ and ‘Palmers Green Mosque’ progressed it quickly became apparent that our responsibility also lay not only with our brothers and sisters in Palestine, but also with our own community here who are almost traumatised, well, at least yearning and felt duty bound to make things better for our siblings 2,200 miles away. 

Our community needed an ‘outlet’ as such, at a time when a few clicks to a donation page doesn’t just cut it for the suffering we also feel. We needed to enable our community to come together in some capacity at least, and what better place that the centre of our community, our beautiful Mosque in Palmers Green, Alhamdulillah. 

We reached out to our community, our sisters, our brothers, our aunties and even our uncles, we reached out to any of those who had the skillset to cook delicious food. We asked you to cook your best dishes, bake your best efforts, and Alhamdulillah you did deliver. You, our beautiful community made over 1,500 portions of home-cooked food, that most of you even came and sold personally to raise funds. Alhamdulillah, the beautiful smiles, the lovely little laughs, the excitement, combined with the blessed shining sun created such a community, that came together as one local ummah in sympathy of our Palestinian siblings.  

A sister mentioned that as people purchased her food that she cooked with her own bare hands in the early morning (after working a 60 hour week), she mentioned such a feeling of community, such a feeling of love that she almost felt as though she was feeding Palestinians, Subhan'Allah. 

With our beautiful community today, we Alhamdulillah raised over £12,000 for food, water, medical and shelter facilities in Gaza, but much more than that, we raised our spirits as a community, we came together to support each other and that is priceless. Cliché? Yes, but still nevertheless so very heartfelt and true. 

We are aware that some of you didn’t have the ability to be present in person today, but you still arranged food, inspired, pushed & promoted our event, even with Duas. For that, we love you just as much. Alhamdulillah. May Allah SWT reward your efforts abundantly also. 

We have all been feeling disheartened recently, some of us, so much so that a dear brother felt a great sense of guilt to even celebrate Eid after our Ramadan fasts ended. 

After the sympathetic trauma we also experience, we need not forget that our actions, our community, our love for our ummah will help us a little at least. 

Our mosque is the centre of our community, but only when each one of you is part of our active community. Please don’t forget that, to keep on building the community in and around our mosque....especially as you don’t even realise how much that community helps some of us in our hearts.