I want our association to be more open & transparent, I want us to listen to everyone, and answer any question that is raised no matter how difficult. We need to change the culture & behaviour of members and how people perceive the committee, we are not just the “doers” we are in fact the “custodians” for the next 2 years.
Taking building and maintenance work as an example, a model of collaborative working with the members and maintaining transparency and accountability:
- Committee identifies the work/project/requirement
- Committee appoints an advisory group to complete a feasibility
- Advisory group provides recommendations
- Committee reviews and prioritises work that needs to be completed.
- Project is put out to tender
- Responses from reputable companies advertised on notice board for a 4 week consultation with the wider membership
- Evaluate and action any feedback, comments, objections and suggestions whilst maintaining a total impartiality and transparency. (If the need arises include further consultation prior to any approvals)
We need to maintain a structured approach and work professionally; we need to consider long term sustainability not just short term gains. We need to leave a legacy for our future generations. We need to be robust in our way of thinking and always be mindful of how our actions will affect the future of our organisation and community.
Our Masjid is the hub of the community providing a safe environment for worship and community activities. As an organisation we also have another very important role to fulfil, one of education; both our Madrassah and School are hugely successful in providing this service. We do however need to keep at the forefront the long term sustainability of both these facilities and provide adequate support for these to flourish. The school has enjoyed huge success by becoming an OFSTED ‘outstanding’ school (Alhamdolillah). The Madrassah will no doubt face some challenges in the near future in terms of government legislation and will need support. Although Committee members are on the governing board and the Mohtameem is responsible for Madrassah function, the organisation would benefit from inviting the Head teacher for the school and the Principal of the Madrassah to periodically present summary reports at Executive Committee meeting; this will keep the committee informed and provide a level of transparency. It is also expected that the committee members on the governing board provide feedback to the committee subsequent to Governor meetings on non-sensitive issues. (engage head teacher and principal for initial meetings)
We need to make sure we have the right people sitting on external boards, LCM, Burial Committee, Northwest Relief fund etc., it is also my intention to work closely with the Police, Local Authority, Fire Brigade, local churches and schools.
We need to be aware of social media and become more ‘computer friendly’ as an organisation, we need to provide and cater for all our members and they should feel part of an organisation that listens and meets their needs.
I would like all members to take time out, and look how our organisations operate, arrange to speak with those in charge, get a feel for the challenges they are facing, let us look at ways to move forward, together with consultation and everyone on board. I hope Committee members will provide their observations at the next monthly meeting.
We have fantastic facilities, I would love to setup fitness classes for the ladies, as well as the men, we should be holding regular events in the hall, recruitment fairs, multi faith events, charity events etc. We have a cohort of members with so many different skills, we should be able to tap in to them and help them steer our future generations in the right directions
We need to work with different partners (e.g. Health and Wellbeing Boards, NHS etc.) and look closely at the health impact on our community particularly dementia, diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, there are things we should be providing information to our members.
We must not forget our elders, we should have a coffee mornings or afternoons for them, they can read a newspaper have a coffee and just chat, helping the elderly is an Islamic duty on all of us, once we get up and running I would love to see a regular hot meal day event – social isolation of the elderly is a huge issue and can lead to many health issues; by providing breakout services we will be contributing to the health agenda.
I would like to setup several advisory committees that will help the Exec Committee make better decisions; to look at situation from different angles:
- Arbitration: when issues arise, the Exec Committee are to embroiled in the matter personally, a disciplinary committee would look at our view, constitutional view and also the view of any concerned parties, then make a fair and impartial decision on the issue and propose a course of action.
- Charity Group: Alhamdulillah the community always gives to worthy causes throughout the year, but charity begins at home, we should look at creating a charity group, that will benefit local hospitals. Hospices, NHS, local Charites that work within our community. We should look at holding ladies only events, football and sport tournaments that will raise money for Sajedeen Charity, but more importantly it will help unite the community. We want youth Ladies and men on this board, that will promote our charity throughout the year, by holding events and fundraisers as well as raising awareness of the chosen charity.
- Ulemahs: again Alhamdulillah we have some fantastic talent, we should be working with then to look at issues within our community, we need to look at our young boys who have become Hifzul Quran how can we help them, not just Islamically but how can we help them in their careers, we need to train our staff to deal with students, etiquettes with the community. Safeguarding, H&S issues, we should be training them in First Aid. We can do so much helping each other, when you have someone who is qualified as a doctor he is respected (rightly so) but our young Ulemahs are not. Again we have to change the thinking of the wider community, am not saying it would happen overnight, but over the years we should see some change and we have to start somewhere
- Youth: our future, if we don’t invest in them then we are a failure, they won’t come in to the masjid as they feel no one is prepared to listen to them, and when we do we don’t act on their recommendations, we need to have a full youth committee, that will help the exec committee as well as having a voice in the committee, they should look at regular gatherings of all the youths within our communities’ members and non-members, promoting Islamic values, manners, good etiquettes, sporting events, encourage new members, make Sajedeen the hub of the community for all to use. Again to many boys are leaving Maddresah at an early stage, we must provide an environment for them to learn about Islamic values, Islamic cleanliness, Islamic way of life that can be used in their day to day lives. I would love to have football teams for Sajedeen youngsters praying in our madrasahs, we want them to feel part of our community from a very early age. Only then will we have the youth leading from the front.
- Ladies: the mothers of our future generations, we start to look after them, they will start to look after our future generations. Very important roles to be played by the ladies, we need to look at ways of how we can help their day to day lives become better, how we can help young girls who have left Maddresah with mas’ala and mas’ail, in an environment that they enjoy, this is the 21st century and if we don’t, then we will lose them forever. It has to be a partnership with everyone, again we have some very talented ladies within our community we need to tap in to them all and get the best for our ladies.
- Ramadhan: This is a very special time of the year, every second of the month is different, we need to create an atmosphere for everyone, we want people to enjoy Ramadhan to the Maximum, we want them to use the Masjid for everything, we want to create something special, we must have good Ulemahs giving bayaans at least twice a week, we should have a special programme suited for everyone on the 27th We should have special learning classes that can then be implemented throughout the year. The lads who every year sit outside the health centre, we should bring them in to the masjid, if even if we give them a small room to pray tarraweah from Alum Tara, the new generations think it’s cool not to pray tarraweah, we need to change the mind-set of these future generations. We should be planning Ramadhan 4 months in advance, I feel this is a very special time of the year and if we can make people feel special, they will feel we as a committee are doing something about it. We need to listen to our members and how we can make Ramadhan a special month for all.
- Constitution: we have heard a lot of suggestions over the last few months, we need to have constitution fit for 2018 that will help and benefits everyone, it has to be robust and we need the future built in to the constitution. Again we have a lot of talent and it is time we used them to help and advise on how best to move it forward. In Sha Allah I will be appointing 2/3 members from the committee to look how we can change the Constitution and deliver a document that will cater for everyone’s needs.
These Advisory Committees are there to help the Exec make better decisions, we can always go back to the membership and say we listen to advisory committees before we took decisions, it is safeguarding us all from criticism and making sure we are working above board with transparency and clarity. What I would like to do is appoint these advisory committees with clear guidelines of what they should be looking at, steer them in the right direction. To give value to them, one of the advisory members would come to the Exec Board meeting once a month to put their proposals to us. I would like to arrange a meeting with all volunteers during the upcoming holidays to discuss a way forward. We want to promote this via announcements and also hand pick volunteers from within the community who we know will make a difference. In this day and age Unity, and working together with people from all background is the key, and a way forward. JZK
Cllr Salim Sidat MBE
Masjid E Sajedeen, Maddresah Islamiyah, Islamiyah Girls School
We have a state of the art Ghusl Khana (body washing) area and a body storage facility....
Congratulations on your upcoming wedding! Masjid-E-Sajedeen can facilitate and host nikkah...
Our Madrassah offers a variety of classes for all age groups, from basic arabic quran read...
Helping our communities is vital, especially in times of need. During the Covid-19 Pandemi...