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Muslim Youths help clean up the streets

Following the New Year’s Eve celebrations, thousands of Muslim youth around the world will be ushering in the new year armed with bin bags and litter-pickers to help keep the streets clean.

As part of an International initiative, members of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Youth Association (AMYA) begin the new year with the pre-dawn prayer to supplicate for peace, harmony and coexistence in the world, and then proceed to clean their respective neighbourhoods and cities.

The National President of the New Zealand (NZ) chapter of the AMYA, Azeem Zafarullah said, “We have partnered up with local councils and their contractors, and target parks and streets that get heavily littered after New Year’s celebrations helping to tidy them up before the day begins.”

“Following a visit from the Worldwide Head of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community His Holiness Mirza Masroor Ahmad to NZ in 2013, the AMYA was instructed to also begin the New Year’s clean up here in New Zealand along with other ways of serving our country”, says Mr Zafarullah.

“Our motivation and drive for such charitable acts are the teachings of Islam. Islam not only teaches us to love and serve our country, but also to help keep the environment and surroundings clean.”

He further said, “The Prophet Muhammad has stated that ‘removing harmful things from the road is a charity’. Therefore, in keeping with the spirit of the Islamic teachings and to encourage Muslim youth to serve our respective countries, we set a precedent for the rest of the year.”

This year, approximately 40 volunteers, from as young as 8 years old to retirees over 60, helped clean Albert Park, Queen St, Myers Park, and Victoria Park in Auckland, as well as Lake Domain and surrounding streets in Hamilton. Similar activities will be undertaken by the Ahmadiyya Muslim youths the world over.

“As part of our pledge we say, ‘I solemnly pledge that I shall always be ready to sacrifice my life, wealth, time and honour for the sake of my faith, country and nation” says Mr Zafarullah. “There is no contradiction in being a practicing and sincere Muslim and serving our respective countries. As with past years, we will inshaAllah [God willing] be participating in blood donation sessions, charity collections, homeless feeding sessions, peace symposiums, interfaith events, participation in ANZAC parades and many other activities.”

The Ahmadiyya Muslim Youth Association is an auxiliary of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community; a fast-growing international revival movement within Islam. The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community spans over 212 countries with membership exceeding tens of millions. Its motto of ‘Love for all, hatred for none’ is evidenced through the peaceful actions of its millions of followers. The New Zealand branch of this community was established in 1987. It is a registered charitable organisation and endeavors to be an active and integrated community within New Zealand society.

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