- TARIC Islamic Centre serves up hundreds of meals a week to those in need
- The initiative overlaps with a holy month in the Islamic calendar, which recognizes the birth of Prophet Muhammad.
TORONTO – A Canadian mosque dished out its milestone 15,000th meal as part of its soup kitchen and meal delivery service on December 2, CBC reported.
“Our TARIC Islamic Centre’s soup kitchen initiative has been going on for seven years. All my family members including myself volunteer in this charity work,” said Sameer Subedar.
The soup kitchen announced that it served over 15 emergency/crisis shelters in Toronto and hundreds of meals each week to senior homes and low-income complexes. About 40 to 50 volunteers come out each week to help out.
“Our goal is just to help our neighbours. Unfortunately, there’s a lot of people here that need food, and we’re just trying to give them one meal to help,” the Muslim volunteer informed.
He says last week, the soup kitchen served as much as 1,000 meals — the most it ever gave out in a single day — but for Sunday, the kitchen had a goal of serving about 750 dishes.
Subedar says he was surprised to learn how many in the community needed help and wanted to give back; “I just want to help the neighborhood, help the community and teach my kids to always give back to the community. That’s so important.”
The initiative’s lead volunteer, Imraan Assim, has been part of the movement for six years and has seen it blossom. “This is the quintessential crossroads of being Canadian and being Muslim. We’re very happy and humbled at the same time to be able to do this.”
“There’s lots of Muslims and non-Muslims. This program, it’s never been about just feeding Muslims. It’s everybody across the board. Wherever there’s need is where we want to serve,” Assim assured.
According to Canada’s 2011 National Household Survey, there were 1,053,945 Muslims in Canada, or about 3.2% of the population. This makes Islam the second largest religion in the country after Christianity.