2 years ago I came across a video on YouTube of a brother in Colombia who was Muslim - he told the story of how he came to accept Islam and offered some insight on Islam in his small community in Colombia mashaAllah.
On a whim I tried contacting him and was successful alhamdulillah. After seeing in the video that the Masjid was in need of books for their library, a few friends and myself were able to raise around $600 with which we purchased books for the masjid's library, some hijabs, kufis, miswaak, and 2 boxes of dates.
The boxes contained probably only 2 or 3 dozen dates, but subhanAllah, it meant SO much to them. Upon receiving the parcel Brother Dawud emailed me saying:
"Alhamdulillah I just received the package yesterday, its very nice alhamdulillah. I havent seen dates for long long time I cried when I saw the two boxes of dates."
SubhanAllah, imagine how such a simple gift could mean so much! Our brothers and sisters only know of dates from reading ahadeeth and haven't had the pleasure of implementing any of those ahadeeth into their lives because they do not get dates… they haven't tasted dates… or even seen or felt them.
Dates are such an essential part of Ramadan. No one can deny the beautiful feeling we get while sitting down with a group of brothers/sisters to break fast with, while a plate of plump, soft dates are being passed around as everyone is pouring cups of water/milk/chai/rooh afza =D.
This project is so simple to contribute to and it'll show our brothers and sisters in newly developing communities that we care enough to reach out to them.These communities are made up of almost all reverts, mashaAllah. They are truly the ghurabaa' of their countries and we can only imagine how difficult it is for them to accept Islam and change their lifestyle over there. where in some cases more the 90% of the population is Catholic and Islamic is still even unheard of. On top of that, they live in the hottest area of the world and are now expected to fast and abstain from food all day - this is all such new stuff to them. Reaching out in this simple manner will surely bring a smile to their face and hopefully with that they will remember to make du'a for us as well!
A beautiful hadith I would like to quote is:
The Prophet (SAW) said: "Whoever gives someone something to break the fast with, he would have the same blessings as the fasting person and this would not reduce the blessings of the fasting person in any way" [Ahmad and Tirmidhi]
Just $20 - $40 is enough to buy 1 huge box of dates inshaAllah… this isn't much for even 1 person to contribute. But we need several boxes, our goal is to at least ship to 1 masjid in each country, bi idhnillah… but hopefully we can go beyond that =) What is straining in this project is the shipping fee for the dates because they are so heavy and need to be shipped in a timely manner to avoid spoilage, this is what really holds back these communities from even attempting to get the dates themselves.
Note that you can donate via the ChipIn feature on the site using a PayPal account or using your credit/debit card. If you'd like to mail a check or money order please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for the mailing address
And don't forget to share the blog link with your friends, invite your friends to the group on facebook and email the info as well!