SE Michigan (V9-I16)

Canton Mosque Fundraiser for Helping Hands Foundation

Canton–April 7–Helping Hands is one of the best-known Muslim charities, with programs across the world. On Saturday they held a fundraiser at the MCWS mosque on Palmer Road in Canton, Michigan.

Imam Johari Abdul Malik, a prominent imam who is the official imam of the Dar Al Hijra Mosque in Northern Virginia, spoke to the gathered MCWS community members and vigorously encouraged them to support the orphan program of the Hidaya Foundation.

About 200 people attended the event in total.

The event began at approximately 6pm at the mosque, with a brief speech by Imam Ali who read Suratul Fatiha.

Br. Shahid, of Helping Hands, explained that from 2005, Helping Hands had taken over all ICNA Relief international projects. Today, he said, the fundraiser was to support an orphan sponsorship program.

But in addition, Helping Hands was sponsoring a large earthquake relief program in Kashmir to relieve those afflicted by the huge earthquake which struck in October of 2005, killing perhaps 100,000 people in India, Pakistan, and disputed Kashmir.

The speakers emphasized the dearness of protecting orphans to our Prophet (s).

Mr. Ashraf Qazi, a prominent local businessman who has worked much to support Helping Hands, spoke in support of the organization, because he himself, he said, had seen their excellent work in Kashmir, where an isolated village (Khan Hiri–in the mountains and accessible only by horses and by foot) had been rebuilt by Helping Hands alone, with great efficiency and great involvement of the local people. Mr. Qazi emphasized that Muslims have to be careful to whom they give their money and that Helping Hands is a worthy recipient.

Qazi spoke also of a rehab center run by Helping Hands which he had visited and which had made many artificial limbs for amputees–casualties of the quake.

He advised all those present to remember that “We are not better” than those who suffered this tragedy.

We watched a brief documentary of Helping Hands’ efforts worldwide, which showed that its attempts to focus on Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Kenya, and Iraq, and that it believes in “helping hands, not a handout.”

The video mentioned Helping Hands’ work everywhere around the world, including especially tsunami-devasted Indonesia where Helping Hands had provided hospitals, education, ambulances, vocational development, interest-free loans, houses, and rehab centers.

Imam Johari closed out the session with intense and vigorous fundraising which enabled the collection of an estimated $90,000 (according to MCWS’s Imam Ali) for the worthy cause of helping distressed orphans.

AAI Statement on Attack at Assyrian Church in Michigan

WASHINGTON – April 6, 2007 – The Arab American Institute (AAI) and Arab Americans across the country are deeply saddened by the hateful anti-Arab epithets that were spray painted on the Holy Apostolic Catholic Assyrian Church of the East in Warren, Mich., during what is the holiest week for the Christian community. This attack magnifies the divides, created by fear and ignorance, which still must be bridged.

It is distressing and an affront to our nation’s core values that these church members were targets of attack because of their Middle East heritage. News reports suggest that the church community may victimized because the perpetrators thought the house of worship was a Mosque – a notion that is equally troubling to the Arab American community.

AAI commends the Michigan Department of Civil Rights for swiftly implementing an investigation and offering its assistance to the church and the surrounding community. AAI also calls on the FBI to investigate the vandalism as a hate crime.

Finalists in Flint Islamic Center Seerah Competition

Leila Tarakji 1st
Aishah Aslam 2nd
Eman Hammoud 3rd
Khaled Hammoud 4th
Rhami Khorfan 5th

Marium Zafar 1st
Abdelkhalek Elagamy 2nd
Omar Malas 3rd
Ebrahim Abdelrazzak 4th
Tariq Elagamy 5th

Saara Mohammad 1st
Mishaal Khan 2nd
Aamir Bandagi 3rd
Zena Khorfan 4th
Kareem Shukairy 5th
Abdulghani Hammoud 6th

Michigan leaders honored at Molina Community Champion Awards

DETROIT–The unsung heroes who work behind the scenes to make the Detroit region a better place enjoyed a night in the spotlight on Thursday, March 29 with Molina Healthcare of Michigan’s first annual Community Champion Awards event.

Held in downtown Detroit, the ceremony honored eight community leaders whose selflessness, extraordinary service and contributions to the community have had a positive impact on the health and well being of those around them. Each honoree was recognized with a $1000 grant to help further the work of their sponsoring organization and a Dr. C. David Molina Award trophy, named in honor of Molina Healthcare’s physician founder.

“We are privileged to recognize these dedicated champions who have gone above and beyond to fill vital needs in our community,” said Roman T. Kulich, president & chief executive officer of Molina Healthcare of Michigan. “Their spirit of selflessness, commitment and caring embodies the philosophy of our founder, and we are delighted to honor their contributions.”

This year’s C. David Molina Award recipients are:

* Ms. Cornelia Hall, Coalition on Temporary Shelter (COTS)
* Ms. Helen Stewart, N.P., POH Children’s Clinic
* Ms. Chaunci Cline, New Prevailing Community Church
* Ms. Louanne Bakk, Area Agency on Aging 1B
* The Honorable Freddie G. Burton, Jr., Detroit Youth Foundation
* Adnan Hammad, Ph.D., Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services (ACCESS)
* Ms. Alicia M. Clyburn, Trailblazer division of the Boy Scouts Camping & Special Needs
* Senator Hansen Clarke, Community Agencies

The evening also included a jazz performance and artwork, courtesy of students from the Detroit School of the Arts and Detroit’s College for Creative Studies.

Molina Healthcare, Inc. is a multi-state managed care organization that arranges for the delivery of healthcare services to persons eligible for Medicaid and other programs for low-income families and individuals. Molina Healthcare currently serves approximately 1.1 million members in California, Michigan, New Mexico, Ohio, Utah, Texas, and Washington. More information about Molina Healthcare, Inc. and its subsidiary, Molina Healthcare of Michigan, can be obtained at