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The following are articles from various news media about Dar-us-Salaam and Al-Huda School.

Preschoolers learn about Hajj, the pilgrimage to Mecca PDF Print Email

By Carimanda Baynard | Published by DC Intersections on January 1, 2010

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Laughter rings throughout the classroom. The patter of little feet precedes the eager greetings between friends.  Vibrantly colored curtains hang from the windows.

The Al-Huda Preschool is like any other to the untrained eye. Located within Dar-us-Salaam, a Muslim community organization that includes a K-11 school, in College Park, Md., the preschool is the point of entry for many families.

According to the school’s 2009-2010 demographic data, the Al-Huda Preschool has 40 female and 30 nine male students.  Their families are from Pakistan, Ethiopia, Arab countries, Bangladesh and other countries.  Nineteen are African American, and 12 were reported as being of mixed ancestry.

Al-Huda Preschool teaches children 18 months through 4 years old early developmental skills in math, reading and writing to prepare students for kindergarten. Religious education and elementary Arabic are also important parts of the curriculum.

Read more...
 
Dar-us-Salaam Family Medical Practice PDF Print Email

By Erica Goldfine | Published by DC Intersections on January 1, 2010

Neatly organized stacks of 10 different magazines sit on a table. A few children’s toys lay on the floor near an empty water cooler. A large TV is mounted to the wall displays health-promotion advertisements for products like fiber cereals.

The office nurses and multiple receptionists talk to patients about their insurance and appointment scheduling. About half a dozen patients sit in the waiting room, reading the magazines, browsing their phones or talking with family members.

At first glance, there is nothing different between this doctor’s office and most others across the United States.

But a closer look reveals that the mothers in the waiting room of the Dar-us-Salaam (DUS) Family Medical Practice are speaking Arabic to their children. And all the women that work at DUS Family Practice wear beautifully designed, colorful hijabs, or Muslim head coverings, for women.

In the corner of the waiting room, there is an “Islamic etiquette” poster about visiting the sick. Above the seating area of the doctor’s office, a black, white, and yellow Arabic painting hangs on the wall. The TV alternates heath promotion ads with a quote of the prophet Mohammed every so often.

The DUS Family Medical Practice, located in Greenbelt, Md., began in January 2005. The medical practice is one component of the Dar-us-Salaam community. The community is “a model Islamic community based upon and adhering to the teachings of the Qur’an and Sunnah,” according to its Web site. The DUS Family Practice is an integral part of the Islamic community that has been created in the southern part of Maryland, close to Washington, D.C.

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Grocery Store Follows Muslim Values PDF Print Email

By Kristin Tangel | Published by DC Intersections on January 1, 2010

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Nestled within a shopping center in College Park, just a short drive from the Beltway, is International Tropical Foods, also known as Salsabeel. It is run by the Dar-us-Salaam Community.

Half grocery store, half Islamic bookstore, it stocks halal food, religious and school literature, CDs, DVDs and clothing that fits Islamic modesty guidelines.

“We try to keep a little bit of everything,” said manager Rizwan Khan.

...The store also sells black seed products, hailed as a source of amino acids, carbohydrates, minerals, oil and fiber. Black seed comes from the Nigella sativa plant and is found in few stores besides halal and Middle Eastern shops.

Black seed, also known as “blessing seed”, is popular because it is mentioned in the hadith, of word of the Prophet Muhammad. Employee Mukhtar Sheikh said that many non-Muslims come to the store to buy black seed products.

Dar-us-Salaam used to have a separate kitchen, but a fire rendered it unuseable in May 2008.

The store previously sold only African food (under the same name) before the community took over it.

Khan said there are plans to expand the store into the space next door so it could offer a wide range of cuisine, especially because of the multicultural makeup of the community.

Read the rest of the article on the 'American Observer'
 
Memorizing the Qu’ran Teaches Young Muslims About More Than Words PDF Print Email

By Geena Wardaki | Published by DC Intersections on January 1, 2010

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With crossed legs, they rock back and forth to the melodic recitation that fills the air. One boy rests his hands on his head. His eyes reveal the concentration of grasping for verse after verse.

Mohammad Nahavandi, a guide on a personal journey to tackle a great feat of memory, paces back and forth with arms crossed and ears listening intently as a student sits by his desk reciting. Nahvandi's eyes stray to his Qur'an from time to time, double-checking the words that have become second nature.

His students work towards reciting roughly 600 pages of Arabic text that millions look to for guidance.

In the Hifzh school, students of all different ages, use daily recitation to memorize the Qur'an, the holy book of Islam, from cover to cover. The program is part of the larger Dar-us-Salaam Muslim community in College Park, Md. The school is comprised of one class for females and two for males, with about 10 to 12 students per class.

Read more...
 
Muslims, Jews Cooperate to Help Homeless Women PDF Print Email

By Arif Kabir | Published by The Muslim Link on February 27, 2009

A few days before the Presidential Inauguration, ISNA (Islamic Society of North America) announced a collaborative effort with the Presidential Inauguration Committee for the National Day of Service on January 19, 2009. They were encouraging Muslims to hold their own local service events and were told to inform ISNA about them so that their event could be put on the official inauguration website.


Seeing this, the Islamic Information Center of Dar-us-Salaam (IIC) posted their upcoming monthly trip to volunteer at the Dinner Program of Homeless Women in Washington DC. In just a few hours, the event started to rapidly fill up as people signed up for the soup kitchen event. They were all part of a Jewish community called Shirat HaNefesh (Song of the Soul) and wanted to participate in the event alongside with the Islamic Information Center. The IIC agreed and they soon made plans to meet at Dar-us-Salaam and to go to the soup kitchen from there.


The National Day of Service came, and bystanders looked on as they watched a large group of approximately twenty Muslims and Jews walking on their way from Dar-us-Salaam to the nearby Metro. When the group arrived at the Metro, they were amazed to see endless lines of people waiting to buy their tickets for the Presidential Inauguration that was to be held the next day.

Here the group split; some went back to Dar-us-Salaam and then carpooled, while others that had Metro passes from before went on the Metro to Washington DC. On the trip there, lively conversation ensued as everybody started to talk about their religion and beliefs. Jenny Adams, organizer of the event, commented, “Some of the Jewish volunteers thanked us for explaining many things to them. We had a long conversation on many topics in the car ride. They asked many questions about Islam and Muslims, and it was a very positive exchange of knowledge”.

After both groups arrived in Washington DC, they made their way to the soup kitchen. Just as Barack Obama helped out at a homeless shelter earlier that day, the group also quickly became involved in the different tasks at the soup kitchen by preparing the food, washing the dishes, and cleaning up the trash. As they started on their duties, they were surprised to see a barrage of journalists and photographers sweep into the kitchen. They identified themselves as part of MediaSoup, which is a group of independent journalists that are dissatisfied with the reporting of the mainstream media. They had found out about the program through the online posting of the event and after given permission, they started to snap pictures of Muslims and Jews working side by side for a worthy cause.

After all the food was prepared, the dishes were washed, the trash was cleaned, and the food was served to the homeless women, everybody felt satisfied and content. Nathan Mishler, the director of the homeless shelter, remarked, “It was really great to have such a large group. There was good energy and mix of people, and it was fun.”

This service project is a monthly outreach effort by the Islamic Information Center of Dar-us-Salaam.

 
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