ALBERTA – Young as they might be, Muslim students from Fort McMurray Islamic School in Canada’s Alberta district have succeeded in impressing the whole community by their special awareness day in which they highlighted Islamic beliefs, achievements and discoveries.
“It’s a great event,” Emma Korolew, who attended the event, told Fort McMurray Today on Friday, June 13.
“I loved trying on the hijab (Islamic headscarf), and got to keep it too, the henna tattoos, and learning so much about Islam and women’s role in the religion,” she added.
Korolew is one of about 1000 people who attended the special Islamic Awareness day last week as MacDonald Island in Alberta’s Fort McMurray.
The day-long event, organized by Markaz-ul-Islam, the Islamic Centre of Fort McMurray, exhibited projects on various topics about Islam from several Islamic school.
Yet, students from McMurray Islamic School (FMIS) have managed to attract the attention of the audience with their various projects about Islam achievements and discoveries 1400 years ago.
Two of the students, Sumayya Imran and Safiya Ahmad, submitted a project of the Muslim discovery of coffee in Ethiopia by a shepherd.
“Because alcohol is prohibited in Islam, it became the favored drink,” they said.
Haris Khan won in the Grade 11 category with his project about science in Islam outlining scientific facts included in the Noble Qur’an 1,400 years ago.
“The Holy Qur’an, our Islamic holy book talks about two seas that don’t mix consisting of fresh and salty waters – for example, the Mediterranean and the Atlantic. Dead Sea was also predicted as the lowest point on dry earth 1,400 years ago,” explained the Westwood Community High School student.
Taimoor Arshad secured first place in the Grade 10 category with his interactive display on Al-Jazari, a 12th century Muslim inventor, mechanical engineer, craftsman, artist and mathematician to name just a few of his vocations.
Arshad, a Westwood Community High School, and a budding engineer found him intriguing when his mentors suggested Al-Jazari.
“When I researched him, I knew I had my project. It was great to have it on display at the entrance and have people stopping to ask questions. Islamic Awareness Day was an amazing day,” he shared.
Attending the event, guests expressed how they were impressed by the project and passion of the students.
“I’ve learned about many Muslim contributions to civilization today,” MLA Don Scott said.
“Whether it is about parachutes, or coffee, or elephant clocks, the incredible students have impressed me. It’s great to see the Muslim community grow in Fort McMurray.”
Islamic Awareness Day also featured free coffee, a busy kids’ corner with face painting, games, a balloon artist, and traditional food.
The Islamic Centre of Fort McMurray was established in 1983. The congregation plans to make this an annual event.
Concluding the first event, community leader Kyle Harrietha said he was impressed with the breadth of the day.
“Islamic Awareness Day illustrates the amazing diversity of Fort McMurray,” Harrietha shared.
“I was a student of Muslim history in university, so I know Muslims found chemistry, Algebra, and more. Muslim scholars have laid the foundation for Western civilization for millennia.”
Bushra Naseer who helped oversee the event said the response was “more than great.”
“Our volunteers did a great job. The children didn’t want to leave, and we had a great response from the community,” shared Naseer.
“Thank you to everyone for an incredibly memorable day.”