TORONTO – Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau visited the Muslim Welfare Centre in Toronto on Thursday and took part in their Project Ramadan initiative that assembles food baskets distributed to the needy in the city.
“`Eid Mubarak, everyone. What a pleasure to see the community come together in generosity and support, working hard for our neighbors, working hard for those who are less fortunate,” Prime Minister Trudeau told the Project Ramadan volunteers.
“It really is something that is so typically Canadian to be there for our neighbors,” remarked the Prime Minister. “But it is also at the heart of what it means to be Muslim – to be generous, to be present in your community, to be contributing.”
Established in 2009, Project Ramadan fundraises, assembles and distributes baskets containing staple food items that help recipients – regardless of race, nationality or ethnicity – thus providing healthy, balanced meals during the holy month of Ramadan.
According to Project Ramadan, its mission is ‘to build food baskets that will provide one month’s supply of food, household goods and a little bit of extra happiness to a local Toronto-area family in need.’
As a program of the Muslim Welfare Centre of Toronto (MWC), Project Ramadan brings together hundreds of generous and enthusiastic volunteers from across the city during Ramadan to make this initiative possible.
“This is a perfect example of the strength and resilience of Canada, a place that understands that strength comes through diversity not in spite of it and the more we pull together and help each other out, the better we all are,” said Prime Minister Trudeau.
“It is an extraordinary pleasure for me to celebrating with you all. `Eid Mubarak and Merci beaucoup.”
Project Ramadan is a signature program of the Muslim Welfare Centre (MWC) which was established in 1993 with a simple mantra and mission, “Service to humanity is service to Allah.”
Since its inception, the MWC has created and run many beneficial community programs such as Meals on Wheels for seniors, a free medical clinic for the uninsured, Regent Park meals service, public school nutrition programs and three food banks.
Muslims are the fastest growing religious community in Canada, according to the country’s statistical agency, Statistics Canada.
Canada’s Muslim population increased by 82 percent over the past decade – from about 579,000 in 2001 to more than 1 million in 2011. Muslims represent 3.2 percent of Canada’s total population.