On Saturday May 10th, close to 200 members of Ottawa’s Muslim community attended a screening of the documentary UnMosqued at Carleton University and stayed for the discussion that followed. Exploring the ways in which Muslim women, converts to Islam, Muslims from various racial background, and youth in their teens and twenties often feel unwelcome and alienated from their local mosques, the film asks critical questions about the future of the mosque as an institution in North American Muslim communities.
Islam has a long standing tradition of encouraging business and entrepreneurship. The Prophet (peace be upon him, PBUH) was a successful businessman at the age of 25 and so was his first wife, Khadijah. Much of Islam was spread, not by the sword, but through traders from West Africa all the way to Asia.
The idea of entrepreneurship is a long forgotten Sunnah (Muslim practice); Muslim communities, overall, have lost touch with our entrepreneurial history. The entrepreneur is a challenger of the status quo, someone who questions long existing assumptions and then builds the proper infrastructure needed around a solution.
UmmahHub and Anfiq are two new Ottawa-based crowd-funding platforms aimed at providing more sophisticated fundraising options for Muslim communities in order to address one of the most common problems facing the community: fundraising fatigue.