The AMEL Intensive Press Release
بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمٰنِ الرَّحِيْمِ
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
The AMEL Intensive: American Muslims Educating for Liberation
The program aims to equip a new generation of Muslim leaders to break down barriers, build bridges, and better their communities. Since its founding, MuslimARC has organized educational workshops on racism, urged the Muslim community to support #BlackLivesMatter, and conducted a pioneering study on intra-Muslim race relations.
During its first year, MuslimARC has reached over 1,187 people in on the ground workshops and panels, more organizations are requesting MuslimARC’s anti-racism training and presentations in 2015. MuslimARC’s expansion, however, has created some difficult challenges for the organization. Programming Director Margari Hill explains, “Currently, there are only two MuslimARC facilitators who deliver our workshops, yet several Islamic schools have requested MuslimARC’s anti-racism training in Southern California, Chicago, and Maryland. So many schools and organizations have requested MuslimARC services, that it is beyond the workload of two facilitators.” The AMEL Intensive was launched as a solution.. Through the AMEL intensive fellowship, members will become officially licensed by MuslimARC to facilitate trainings. Executive Director, Namira Islam explains that this will enable MuslimARC to quadruple their efforts in expanding anti-racism training across the United States.
The acronym AMEL stands for the Arabic word أمل (hope), word found in the verse of the Holy Qur’an which states, “Wealth and children are [but] adornment of the worldly life. But the enduring good deeds are better to your Lord for reward and better for [one’s] hope.” (18:46). Margari Hill explains that this verse serves as an inspiration for the initiative because it focuses on positive action to instill hope and please God.
In order to bring the AMEL intensive to fruition, MuslimARC has initiated a fundraising campaign beginning October 5th, 2015, utilizing the Muslim crowdfunding resource Launchgood. MuslimARC aims to raise $15,000 within six weeks which is needed to cover the cost of the retreat and travel, and to provide yearlong stipends for trainees. During their first week, they raised a quarter of their goal. MuslimARC volunteers and supporters continue to galvanize in support of the AMEL intensive through social media.
“The Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, showed us through his Sunnah that Black Lives Matter. It is time for the Muslim Community to uphold the Prophetic value of anti-racism and the AMEL intensive has a pivotal role to play in working to accomplish this,” said Hakeem Muhammad, a research volunteer at MuslimARC. Many notable Muslims have also tweeted their support.
Rami Nashashibi, executive director of the Inner-City Muslim Action Network, urged, “Support my dear sisters/brothers at @MuslimARC & their drive to increase training opportunities across US.”
Dr. Hatem Baizen, professor and co-founder of Zaytuna College, stated, “Challenging racism requires dedicated people and funding. I fully support this project: The #AMELIntensive!” ”
With further financial and spiritual support, MuslimARC will be able to expand its reach and mobilize the Muslim Community against racism through educational initiatives, on-the-ground grassroots efforts, and institution building.
To donate, please visit https://www.launchgood.com/AMEL
Note: The above press release is available for use by any and all U.S. Muslim community groups, masjids, and local or national non-profits and organizations.
The Muslim Anti-Racism Collaborative (MuslimARC) is a volunteer-driven education organization building and collecting the tools needed to creatively address and effectively challenge anti-blackness and racism in Muslim communities.
CONTACT: Executive Director, Namira Islam, firstname.lastname@example.org