Muslim Support Network’s Community Dinner
By Abdus Sattar Ghazali
Glimpses of the Muslim Support Network’s Community Dinner
The Muslim Support Network (MSN), held its belated Eid dinner for seniors on October 8 at the Mehran Restaurant, Newark, CA. The dinner was attended by more than 100 seniors and their families.
Raffle was an interesting feature of the dinner. About two dozen prizes were given by the MSN to encourage participation of the seniors.
Needs of Muslim elders/seniors are not being met by our community at large as many of the elders were homebound and encountered language as well as cultural barriers, says Zeya Mohsin,co-founder the MSN. In many cases, the Muslim elders lack transportation or finances and are suffering from both physical and mental health issues, she added while explaining the objective of forming the MSM in November 2005.
The MSM partnered with the City of Fremont’s Human Services Department (HSD) to create a program where the seniors could come out of their homes to socialize. The MSM also established an educational program to improve their lives. To fulfill its mission, the MSN held its first community meeting for elders late in November of 2006. The organizers were encouraged by the response of the community.
Gradually, the MSN expanded its services and programs which included: (1) Monthly socialization and educational meetings. (2) Escort services for doctor visits. (3) Transportation for elders. (4) Group field trips. (5) Walking partners. (6) Special events such as the EID dinner. (7) Information and referral services. (8) Travel escorts to shopping and other community business. (9) Book exchanges.
Zeby Mohsin said the MSN now holds a luncheon gathering on the fourth Monday every month for the seniors to provide them an opportunity to socialize and also educate them about improving their quality of life through various programs. The meeting is held at the Senior Citizens Center, Fremont , CA.
The Eid dinner was part of MSN’s mission to provide an opportunity to the elders in the Muslim community to socialize and exchange views about their common issues and problems.
At the end Zeby Mohsin thanked all volunteers who helped in arranging the dinner. She thanked, in particular, Abdul Razzak Adenwala, Firdus Kamran, Asia Iqbal, Farhana, Nousheen Haque and Nadra who are always keen to extend a helping hand for the MSN events