IMAN Leaders and Residents Help ‘Refresh The Hood’

Muslim Run 2015Each Ramadan, IMAN organizes the Refresh the ‘Hood Challenge at select Muslim Run corner stores. Refresh the ‘Hood is a collaboration between M.U.R.A.L (formerly the Lupe Fiasco Foundation) and IMAN, which supplies corner stores with subsidized produce to sell at a discounted rate. Four stores received a weekly supply of fresh fruits and vegetables. Throughout the month, IMAN leaders engaged residents through basic wellness outreach and education at the corner stores. Free fresh fruit smoothies were provided by our partners at Al Bawadi Grill.


This year, IMAN deepened the Refresh the ‘Hood effort with cooking demonstrations and by installing new display baskets for affordable produce in the corner stores. Nutritionists from UIC’s Chicago Partnership for Health Apple salad demoPromotion demonstrated simple recipes only using ingredients found inside the corner stores, while educating attendees about the health benefits of those foods.

Refresh the ‘Hood continues to serve as a powerful example of the impact health and wellness education can have at corner stores. Thanks to our cosponsor, M.U.R.A.L.; our partners at UIC, Al Bawadi Grill and EverThrive Illinois; and the many IMAN leaders who all helped make this year’s Refresh the ‘Hood Challenge a success.


Green ReEntry Starts Renovations on Washtenaw

greenrenov1During Ramadan, the latest Green ReEntry cohort showed off their Level 1 Carpentry skills as they began rehab work on the property at 6055 S. Washtenaw Avenue. Originally built as a single-family home in the 1920s, the property is being restored for 2015 and beyond. Once the renovation is complete, the home will feature an open-layout kitchen and dining room, a huge master bedroom and bath equipped with a whirlpool tub, a private office with a “hidden” spiral staircase, and two guest bedrooms with a full bath. IMAN has actively sought to secure a qualified buyer who has been pre-approved by the lender and the City of Chicago. This potential buyer is one of IMAN’s longest-standing leaders, and a pioneer in our reentry work. Please keep him in your prayers!

greenrenov2IMAN recognizes that today’s growing green building industry is a promising place to launch a successful career. The beginning step for the Green ReEntry crew was deconstruction training, a skill that serves as an entrée into virtually every trade within the construction industry. With the skills they acquire working alongside other skilled tradesmen on the job, the Green ReEntry program participants have the potential to become construction foremen, carpenters, electricians, painters and plumbers.

After just the first week of deconstruction training, our crew members were complemented on their work ethic. Supervisors told them that they had all the qualities necessary for a successful career as contractors in the industry!

2015 Ramadan Drive Exceeds Goal

Ramadan Reflect 2015 lqOnce again, IMAN extends its deepest thanks to all of our supporters. Individuals and families alike came together in so many different capacities to make this Ramadan a truly unforgettable one. The immense generosity demonstrated by donors helped us not only reach but exceed our 2015 Ramadan Drive goal.

Their gifts, whether $5 or $5,000, all represent the sacred trust we have accepted to do grassroots work in the inner city, to change, serve and inspire. The success of the 2015 Ramadan Drive is a profound reminder of the genuine hope people across the country have for this work, and the spiritual investment they are making .

2015 Ramadan Community IftarThroughout the month, our entire staff and many leaders were immersed in campaigns, programs and services addressing our core mission. Our financial supporters helped us meet and exceed our goal without having to take time away from those efforts and for that we are so profoundly grateful.

We are committed to working towards excellence in all we do and continue to pray that the Most High make us worthy of your support and prayers.

On Being Rami Nashashibi

I first met Rami over two decades ago — an energetic student and one of those “good” troublemakers on campus who organized with Black, Latino and other students for much-needed change.

Over the years, he’s stayed true to his mission of unifying diverse communities in pursuit of social justice. It’s been an inspiring journey, and I’m excited by the prospect of Rami’s larger story becoming a book that, God willing, will be published before IMAN’s 20th Anniversary. However, we understand that the IMAN story is bigger than just one person.

This story is one of organic evolution and transformative impactdrawing spiritual inspiration from the Muslim tradition and examples of powerful community organizing in black, brown and marginalized communities across America. This story is also one of diverse Muslims coming together to pool resources and talent as they strive to reflect Prophetic mercy in urban America.

Most importantly, this is a story whose most riveting chapters are still being written, with your prayers, donations and support. In these final, sacred days of Ramadan, please continue to help us fulfill the enormous potential of IMAN’s story! Donate today and your zakat-eligible, tax-deductible donation will be matched by a generous family. Please remember them in your prayers.

Dr. Aminah McCloud
Director of Islamic World Studies at Depaul University
IMAN Board of Directors

Rami’s On Being interview can be downloaded here: “A New Coming Together