Indian Minority Education Society of Australia Inc (IMESA) held a fundraising Iftar event on Sunday 26 March 2023 at The Bowman Hall in Blacktown with well over 300 people in attendance. 

 

 

 

The program commenced with Quran recitation and Ramadan talk by Moulana Abeer ul Hassan Thanvi, a locally raised Imam, educated in South Africa.

 

Soon after Iftar, Shaikh Abeer Thanvi spoke about the importance of acquiring  of knowledge in Islam. He mentioned about the great contribution to knowledge and science during Islamic rule of nearly 1000 years.

The Muslims cities of Baghdad, Damascus, Cordoba etc were the largest centres of learning for the entire world during Golden Age of Islam (7th-13th century), imparting knowledge and undertaking research in all fields of sciences and philosophy.

He emphasised the importance of education for Muslim children and appealed for giving zakat and sadaqat during the holy month of Ramadan.

MC Dr Nisa Sheriff told the audience that IMESA aims to increase the educational levels of poorest Muslim children in India. Indian Muslims, nearly 200 million in number, are among the poorest communities, having below average levels of education, and suffer from deprivation of their basic needs.

Current political environment is also not favourable. Education is the only tool which will strengthen their socio economic condition. She urged the guests to help this one of the most deprived Muslim community in the world.

A short film of IMESA showed the project details, the data on Indian Muslims and how their weak socio-economic status had effected their lives, leaving them the least educated and poverty stricken community in the country.

A mini-documentary of IMESA run classes from various parts of India was also screened. In this documentary, a collection of clips, the poor students in various cities, their parents, and teachers told their stories and experiences and extended their gratitude to IMESA for the continued support .

IMESA has now been operating for a few years, continuously expanding its programmes to more cities across various states of India. Currently IMESA projects are running successfully in Vadodara in Gujarat, Shaheen Bagh in Delhi, Saharanpur & Lucknow in Uttar Pradesh, Boisar in Maharashtra, Hyderabad in Telangana, Dehradun in Uttarakhand, Bangalore in Karnataka and Dinajpur in West Bengal benefiting hundreds of the poorest children and their families.

The fundraising call was very well received by the attendees who generously donated to the cause. The fund raising team consisted of Dr Nisa Sheriff, Mr Taufeeq Shaikh, Mr Zahid Jamil, Mr Syed Aslam Shaheer, Mr Shahnwaz Ali, Mr Parveen Jang, Mr Asad Farooq supported by a team of volunteers. Mr Zahid Jamil applauded the patrons for their generosity and thanked  the team members and the volunteers for their tireless efforts.

IMESA seeks to improve the lives of these families through promoting education, both encouraging children to stay in school, and encouraging parents of child labourers to enrol their children in school. It is achieved through educational campaigns, providing additional financial support for families (school fees, uniforms, compensation for lost income of child labourers), and providing after-hours study spaces and tutoring support.

By providing vulnerable children with an education, IMESA seek to improve their future employment and economic opportunities, to improve their overall socio-economic status, and ultimately pass on these benefits to their families and the broader community.

Please visit https://imesa.org.au/ for more details of the organisation and its activities.