Yusuf Islam, the British Muslim artist formerly known as Cat Stevens, has donated an electric-powered peace train to Christchurch, hoping it brings smiles to the future generations.
Islam announced he was donating the train following the March 2019 mosque attacks, when he travelled across the world to perform his classic hit Peace Train at the memorial service held just days after the attacks.
The train, a reference to his 1971 hit of the same name, has four carriages to carry children and families and operates without tracks.
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“We’re looking for a group of willing volunteers to drive the train and to act as conductors for people wanting a ride,” Council parks, programs and partnership manager Kate Russell said, Stuff reported.
“If you love trains, enjoy being around children and are willing to commit to a minimum of three two-hour shifts a year, we would love to hear from you.”
The council plans to run the train in South Hagley Park on the second Sunday of every month – except for the winter months of June, July and August – from 10am to 4pm. It has asked for volunteers to run the train schedule.
“We may increase it if the demand is there, but we know the city has other events that would like to use it,” Russell said.
Islam, who started his music career in the 60s, became a Muslim in 1978. He has a chain of schools and charities.
He runs a charity organization called Small Kindness, which supports victims in conflict zones by providing relief and educational services. A percentage of his Islam’s earnings goes to the charity.
This is not the first time for the Muslim star to make similar initiatives.
In 2018, Islam announced that he donated over AUD 1 million from the proceeds from his 2017 Australian tour to a host local and international causes through the Penny Appeal relief organization.