In an effort to alleviate hunger and fulfill nutrition needs, two mosques have joined hands to open a food pantry in the U.S. city of Springfield.
“Springfield has a large percentage of people who need this assistance,” Imam Mustafaa Islam of Masjid An-Nur told Springfield News-Sun newspaper.
“I work in social services and see this a lot,” he added.
The mosque cooperated with Masjid Al-Madina Mosque to form the Mercy Food Pantry that helped 62 city residents at its grand opening in July.
A variety of food staples are being sold, including canned foods, cereal, potatoes, cabbage, oatmeal, soups, snacks and bread.
Organizers plan to survey the most popular items and could include things such as meats in the future.
Items are purchased from Second Harvest Food Bank through financial donations from members of both mosques.
“It is important to serve directly in the community; it’s a requirement of our faith,” Mariam Khan said.
Islam, for his part, said he hopes the food pantry will help highlight Muslim efforts to serve their community.
“This goes a long way to show what Islam is all about,” he said. “We continue to be a part of the Springfield community and help its needs.”