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54 Sudanese villages to be transformed as Islamic Relief announces ‘Double Your Donations’ Ramadan partnership

54 Sudanese villages to be transformed as Islamic Relief announces ‘Double Your Donations’ Ramadan partnership

Donations to Islamic Relief this Ramadan will be matched pound for pound by additional funding from the UK Government, up to a maximum of £5 million. Contributions from the public will help to alleviate poverty and suffering all over the world, according to each donor’s choice. The extra government money will fund an exciting new project that aims to transform 54 villages in the Blue Nile and West Darfur regions of Sudan.

“Sudan is where it all began for Islamic Relief, because we were set up in 1984 to respond to the famine there,” says Jehangir Malik, UK Director. “We are delighted to announce in our 30th anniversary year that our supporters can double their donations this Ramadan through match funding from the UK Government, enabling us not only to assist poor communities around the world but also to improve health, education, water and earning potential for over 113,000 people in Sudan.”

In awarding the new funding, the Secretary of State for International Development has congratulated Islamic Relief on its 30th anniversary. “Over the past three decades Islamic Relief has exemplified the generosity, kindness and charity of Britain’s Muslim community,” says Justine Greening. “Countless families across the world now have access to healthcare, education and a chance for a better life thanks to their efforts.”

The aim of the new project is to get beyond short-term fixes and help families rebuild their lives by making long-term improvements in the provision of clean water, education and healthcare, and by creating lasting opportunities for people to earn a living.

“Almost three quarters of the people in the areas of Sudan we are targeting can’t get clean water easily, so we will build 122 new water points close to people’s homes,” says Aaliya Ahmed, Islamic Relief’s Global Programmes Coordinator. “Nearly half the population can’t get healthcare, so we’ll rebuild and stock clinics, train health staff and tackle malaria.

“Many children don’t attend school due to long distances and poor facilities – especially girls, who are kept at home to fetch water and often get married young. So we will rebuild and equip schools near to girls’ homes, train teachers and provide basic facilities like latrines and school meals, including vegetables from the school gardens we plant!

“Most importantly, we are determined to ensure that these communities are able to support themselves. So we will train women and young people in new vocational skills to help them earn a living, as well as supporting farmers and livestock owners with training and equipment. Farmers find it difficult to grow crops in such a harsh and hot environment, made worse by climate change, so we’ll teach communities to prevent crop fires spreading and plant new trees to keep land fertile.”

Islamic Relief’s Ramadan appeal leaflets, advertisements and videos are dominated by the ‘double your donations’ message and the word ‘Alhamdulillah’ – ‘all thanks be to God’ in Arabic. “We want to give thanks for all the hard work of volunteers and staff over our 30-year history,” explains Nazia Hassan, Marketing Manager. “We want to give thanks for the blessing of match funding from the Government, which means we can help twice as many people this year. And we hope our donors will want to give thanks for all the good things in their lives by giving generously to those less fortunate.”

Islamic Relief’s appeal plans include:

  • ‘Welcoming Ramadan’ launch dinners in Manchester (June 20), Birmingham (June 23), Glasgow (June 24) and London (June 26).
  • 200 ‘Alhamdulillah’ billboards around the country – plus 22 bus stops where mobile phone technology enables passers-by with a smart phone to hear a prayer
  • Three live appeals on the Islam Channel – on July 1 ,12 and 23
  • 30-second and 60-second TV advertising in English, Urdu and Bengali
  • Three mini-documentaries focusing on Syria and on children around the world
  • Offbeat video for social media starring ‘Mr Beard’ – a donor who is single-mindedly focused on doubling his donation
  • A repeat of the successful Cakes 4 Syria initiative, with volunteers doorstep-delivering delicious cakes and all the proceeds going to our work in Syria and with Syrian refugees
  • A host of mosque collections, street collections and iftars across Britain.

ends

Notes to editors

For more information, to obtain pictures or footage or to arrange an interview, contact Martin Cottingham ([email protected] / 07702-940982).

  • Islamic Relief is an international aid and development charity that aims to alleviate the suffering of the world’s poorest people in over 30 countries, mainly in Africa, Asia and the Middle East. As well as responding to disasters and emergencies, Islamic Relief promotes sustainable economic and social development by working with local communities – regardless of race, religion or gender. Islamic Relief is one of the 14 UK charities that form the DEC (Disasters Emergency Committee) – see https://www.islamic-relief.org.uk/AboutUs.aspx
  • In its 30-year history Islamic Relief has helped 92 million people. This has included providing health care to 17 million people and educating over 300,000 children. Around 38,000 orphans are supported by Islamic Relief sponsors around the world.
  • The month of Ramadan is a time when Muslims fast from dawn to dusk and give to charity as they think about those less fortunate than themselves. British Muslims donate over £100 million to charity during Ramadan, and Islamic Relief receives around a third of its annual income during Ramadan.
  • UK Aid Match is the Government’s scheme to give the public a say in how a portion of the aid budget is spent, by matching public donations to charity appeals for projects to reduce poverty in developing countries. UK Aid Match was launched in June 2011, and Islamic Relief has so far been awarded match funding for its 2012 and 2014 Ramadan appeals. Further details at www.dfid.gov.uk/ukaidmatch

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