After months of preparation and planning, IMAN Atlanta hosted CommUNITY Café: 1000 Mile Journey on April 23, its debut event. A caravan of staff and leaders from Chicago hit the road and took to the skies to support this landmark effort, which was led by ATL Regional Organizer Mansoor Sabree and Ny’imah Byrd. Café guests were treated to a stellar lineup of local, national and international artists; rapper-producer Oddisee headlined the event, Omar Offendum delivered stirring and focused lyrics, independent songstress Drea D’Nur softened hearts with her powerful voice, while Quadir Lateef’s high-octane set provided the perfect opening. CommUNITY Café: 1000 Mile Journey was hosted by poet-authors Basheer Jones and Tasleem Jamila.
While certainly a success in and of itself, CommUNITY Café: 1000 Mile Journey was part of a larger weekend program spearheaded by the IMAN Atlanta team. Greening Youth, a Georgia-based sustainability foundation, hosted an inspiring Young Leaders Forum at their four-acre location on the city’s West Side. Youth from Chicago were able to tour the expansive garden site, which included a chicken coop and aquaponics system, and exchange valuable tips with peers. Omar Offendum, Drea D’Nur and Quadir Lateef joined the IMAN youth for the tour.
Before heading back to Chicago, staff and leaders visited the historic King Center in downtown Atlanta. The group reflected on the legacy of King’s work and connected the IMAN-led MLK Living Memorial Project to this nationally recognized space of remembrance.
IMAN Atlanta now looks to build on the incredible momentum following April’s CommUNITY Café. Stay tuned for the latest news and updates by following IMAN Atlanta on Facebook.
Led by Regional Organizer Mansoor Sabree, the IMAN Atlanta Project gained significant traction in all aspects of its mission this past month, from aligning with local legislators on pressing social justice issues to setting the stage for April’s first-ever CommUNITY Café in Atlanta.
In early March, Sabree traveled to the Georgia State Capitol as a part of the Georgia Justice Project’s annual Lobby Day. Upholding IMAN’s commitment to criminal justice reform, he drummed up support for Georgia Senate Bill 367, which is designed to remove barriers to employment that employment that impede the reintegration of the formerly incarcerated into society. The IMAN Atlanta team stays in close contact with the Chicago headquarters in order to align with its efforts to pass the Removing Invisible Bars Bill (Illinois SB 2282), which is focused on substantial parole reform measures.
IMAN Atlanta supporter base was significantly deepened after Sabree and IMAN Executive Director Rami Nashashibi attended the Organization of Pakistani Entrepreneurs (OPEN) quarterly breakfast gathering. They shared IMAN Atlanta’s vision and achievements, thereby strengthening important networks and relationships. Sabree and Nashashibi also took advantage of their time together to visit like-minded organizations and potential partners like Greening Youth.
Be sure to mark your calendars for Saturday, April 23rd, which will be the first CommUNITY Café held in Atlanta. CommUNITY Café: 1000 Mile Journey is headlined by Washington, D.C.-area rapper Oddisee, and will be the IMAN Atlanta Project’s entrée into the storied Georgia arts community. Follow IMAN Atlanta on Facebook for the latest news and updates!
Inner-City Muslim Action Network, (IMAN) is pleased to announce the IMAN Atlanta Project. This project comes after several years of working closely with leaders in Atlanta and successfully training local community organizers. The Atlanta team will serve under the leadership of Mansoor Sabree, who is IMAN’s first Regional Community Organizer.
In keeping with IMAN’s vision, the Atlanta team will work to “uphold the Muslim tradition of facilitating transformational change in urban communities, by inspiring others towards critical civic engagement and exemplifying prophetic compassion in the work for meaningful social justice and human dignity beyond the barriers of religion, ethnicity, and nationality.” IMAN Atlanta looks to expound upon the 18-year model of IMAN—”Change, Serve, Inspire”—within the Atlanta Community.
“It is clear to me that IMAN is dedicated to leading the prophetic model of serving others. I too share this vision, and I’m very excited to join the IMAN Team.” – Mansoor Sabree
IMAN Atlanta will host its very first CommUNITY Café in Atlanta on Saturday, March 19th.
For more information, contact:
IMAN Atlanta Regional Community Organizer
Last weekend, I had a chance to deliver the keynote at IMAN’s Annual Fundraising Dinner. Ten years ago, I was introduced to this dynamic organization as I addressed the crowd at 2005’s Takin’ it to the Streets. That was a truly transformative time for me. Shortly after Takin’ it to the Streets, I made Hajj and rediscovered some of the profound insights my father wrote about during his famous pilgrimage to Mecca almost half a century earlier.
One of my father’s enduring and visionary reflections concerned the role that Muslims and Islam must play in asserting themselves as a force for good and vehicle for healing in an America still suffering the wounds of racial disparity.
I was powerfully reminded last weekend of what first struck me about IMAN ten years ago. This past February, on the 50th anniversary of my father’s assassination, I wrote a piece in The New York Times entitled, “What Would Malcolm X Think,” in which I reflected on his life in light of the most pressing issues of our time. I can tell you with confidence that my father would have seen IMAN as an organization genuinely struggling to live up to his call for justice around many critical issues affecting low-income communities in our inner cities today.
I was informed that IMAN is only $75,000 away from meeting its larger year-end fundraising goal. Please consider making an additional donation and/or send this email to someone in your intimate circle, asking them to make their year-end donation to IMAN.
Ms. Ilyasah Al-Shabazz