Missouri Muslims Pack 30,000 Meals for 30th Anniversary Celebration

(November 4, 2013, Washington, DC) On Sunday, November 3rd, ISNA cosponsored and participated in a meal packaging event held at the Islamic Center of Central Missouri (ICCM). After the success of the Stop Hunger Now service project, held at the 50th Annual ISNA National Convention, the ICCM approached ISNA representatives to hold a similar event at their center to celebrate their 30th anniversary with service. The event was hugely successful, with over 150 volunteers, exceeding their goal of 30,000 meals. ISNA was joined by the Zakat Foundation in its sponsorship of the event. In addition to financial contributions by both organizations, Safaa Zarzour—Chief Operations Officer of the Zakat Foundation—and Dr. Mohamed Elsanousi—Director of Community Outreach at ISNA—participated by packaging meals with the community. Members of the Muslim community in and around Columbia, along with friends of other faiths in the area, joined together for this day of service. The youth in particular were so excited by the event that they expressed interest in bringing the project back every year. The event was covered widely by local media outlets, including Columbia Faith and Values, Columbia Daily Tribune, and KOMU-TV8. Dr. Elsanousi of ISNA said, “We organized the meal packaging event at our national convention to inspire Muslim community centers across the country to increase in service for the needy around the world. The ICCM has shown passion and dedication to this service, evident in the event today. We are delighted at their initiative.” Numerous Muslim community centers and mosques have shown interest to bring the same service model to their communities.  The ICCM is the first to execute this interest, but more will be following in the coming months. Stop Hunger Now is an organization that provides instruction and supplies for the meal packaging events, whereas the manpower is provided by the host community. Once the meals are packaged, they are sent to countries of need around the world where they provide nutritious and filling meals, often to school children, which are then distributed by international and local partner organizations. To learn more about how you can bring the Stop Hunger Now project to your community, click here!