ROYAL OAK, MI — On December 25, the Michigan Muslim Community Council (MMCC) joined other local organizations to distribute gifts to low-income families in Detroit. This campaign aims to help neighboring communities enjoy the holiday season and has become a symbol of interfaith cooperation and unity in the Metro-Detroit region. Muslims work with Jewish, Christian, and other local volunteers to help the Jimmy’s Kids program provide gifts and food cards to over 350 families in southwest Detroit
Husain Haidri helped organize the project this year for MMCC: “The Days of Ihsan campaign is about promoting the best of actions, or “ihsan.” During the holiday season, we partner with friends of all faiths to help struggling local families. Many of the families only speak Spanish and are greatly appreciative of the gifts and food. Dozens of volunteers helped distribute the gifts to the homes of the families despite significant harsh weather conditions.
MMCC provided every family with a food card and a note in both e English and Spanish stating “Happy Holidays from the Michigan Muslim community. Please accept this $25 gift card to purchase groceries for your family.” Other Muslim organizations contributed volunteers and funds to this effort, including the Islamic House of Wisdom, the Amity Foundation and the Islamic Circle of North America Relief.
Jim Tuman, 81, the founder of Jimmy’s Kids was excited to see everyone come together: “The beauty of what we are able to do here is that people from all different faiths and walks of life come together to serve a common purpose” He said he is grateful for Muslim, Jewish and other volunteers who come every year to help their Christian neighbors. “People across the world are trying to figure out how we can live together, and in this little corner of Detroit, we have it figured out:”
Adam Ahmed, 16, is a high school student who volunteered: “It was really cold outside but seeing the smiles on the kids’ faces when they got the gifts really warmed me up.” He added, “Muslims and Jews don’t celebrate Christmas so we have the time and the responsibility to step up and help these people out. That’s what neighbors do for each other.”