ZF’s Social Services Program was created to help the Chicagoland area
While most of Zakat Foundation of America’s (ZF) programs are international, our Social Services Program was specifically created to help people in the Chicagoland area and across the United States. Alhamdulillah, ZF recently opened a new Chicago Community Center at 1759 East 75th Street in Chicago’s South Shore neighborhood to serve local community members.
Thanks to the enthusiastic welcome and involvement of local community members we had our first event: an evening tea honoring mothers. Participating mothers received gifts and shared their wealth of knowledge as we talked about the community and our collective hopes and aspiration for it. In the community garden we are growing cauliflower, summer squash, cucumber, onion, pepper, tomato, spinach, lettuce, and parsley, which is soon to be harvested and shared with our neighbors.
Some of the volunteers come by every day to help in the garden or with the cleaning of the center. In June, new programs at the Community Center will include: Educational and Tutoring Programs for Youth and Seniors, Nutrition and Health Awareness, GED, ACT and SAT Prep ESL, Arabic and Spanish classes, Cultural Arts, Mentoring: Individual and Group Health, Employment Marriage and Parenting, Many community events at the center are scheduled for this summer, including our greatly anticipated Open House in July! ZF is committed to serving the needs of the community and we are excited about joining the South Shore community in Chicago to expand our reach.
By the Grace of God, we are 15 percent complete with our One Year, 100 Wells Campaign, an initiative to build 100 wells across the globe by April 2013. The countries where we have dug wells are severely afflicted by many water related issues, such as drought, floods and especially contamination of freshwater sources.
We have completed construction of 10 wells in West Africa: six in Ghana, three in the Ivory Coast and one in Burkina Faso. In East Africa we have completed two wells in Ethiopia, two in Somalia and one in Kenya.
Local residents in these communities have played a vital role in building these wells. Your donations have supplied the essential materials. Together we are bringing one of life’s most basic necessities into their communities: clean water.
Nearly 1 billion people do not have access to clean, safe drinking water. But we are changing that, one community at a time. With continued support and grace, we will reach our aim of 100 wells soon.