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Saturday, 14 March 2015

Play & Pray


I had the best time volunteering for Mercy Mission's Play & Pray today. Before I go on telling you about how much fun I've had and the experience I've gained, I should briefly explain what Mercy Mission and Play & Pray are. So, Mercy Mission is one of the world's biggest Islamic NGOs (non-governmental organisation) which aims to help the community by focusing on education and social services. They're widely known for their conferences like Twins of Faith, Being ME, etc and their humanitarian efforts like Charity Right and New Muslim Care. The first time I heard about Mercy Mission was when I was 16, during the Twins of Faith conference that I attended that year (you can read about Twins of Faith : here) and I've wanted to be a part of this organisation ever since. Heck, it's the organisation I wanna work for in the future. So when an opportunity opened up to me to become a volunteer for one of their projects, of course I had to take it. Play & Pray is one of their projects that is aimed at children between the ages of 6 -12, it's basically a one day camp where kids just have fun while learning about Islam. It was an advantage for me because the event was held at the masjid in my neighbourhood, and also I really love kids. 

Being a volunteer for Mercy Mission is not like being a volunteer for any other organisations. Volunteers need to be committed and they are the driving force of the whole thing. Without them, the project will not run. Volunteers are not 'extra help' that don't do much, in fact the volunteers are the ones who are going to be active in every department of the project from handling the technical stuff, to being the MC, to becoming the floor manager, and so on so forth. I was given the responsibility of handling the food and beverages (F&B) for this Play & Pray. I had to look for caterers, think of the appropriate menu and all that. So while I was asking my best friend Jiha for help, I told her about Play & Pray as well and she wanted to become a volunteer too ! So we became the F&B duo of the event haha. Jiha was my partner in crime back in school, we were always together everywhere. She's my neighbour so we went to school to and fro together, we were also classmates, and we were prefects and everything so it was really nice to have her with me. It felt like our form 4 - form 5 glory days all over again hahaha. 





Prior to the event, we had a couple of volunteer meetings this past week to brief us about everything. (Again, not the kind of volunteers that you can just show up on the day and expect to just help out with anything). So today, Jiha and I were out of the house by 7.15, reached the masjid in less than 5 minutes and waited for the others to come. We all had specific jobs to do but we're allowed to help out with things other than that so Jiha and I helped decorate a bit. We had a short volunteer meeting in the morning before registration started, and then Jiha and I had to go out and get the food for breakfast. We were basically in and out the whole day, breakfast and then lunch and then tea. OH look at our F&B logo, it's so cute hahaha. Plus it's two of my favourite colours in one logo, what a coincidence. 







When the kids came, they started off by having breakfast and then we all had to go in for a little ice breaking session. These kids were soooo soooo cute ! And you know how kids are and their antics. Jiha and I got tired from smiling too much, the kids were so funny and adorable hahaha. After that the sheikh gave a short tazkeerah and proceeded with the activities. They had to role play about being dead and then resurrected and knowing kids, they were laughing while resurrecting. The theme of this Play & Pray was Day of Judgement so the first module was basically focused on that. The little boys were really active, they were running and rolling around. They can be naughty but my god, are they intelligent. I mean, when I was 9, I barely even knew the what the concept of akhirat was but these kids, they're 9 and they're already giving good answers about why we Allah made us and why charity is important and all that. I was amazed. 

Jiha and I were not always in the hall since we had to prepare the food but other activities that I managed to participate with them was archery and self-defence. Archery looks easy, maybe it is (and I just suck) but the kids were killin' it. I wish I had gotten more photos, but I had to watch over them and there was somebody with a DSLR taking photos of everything already. My favourite kid was this one, in the white kopiah. He's the smallest little boy in today's Play & Pray and he is absolutely adorable !!! Explains why I only had photos of him. Hah. 



Self-defence was cool, they were taught on how to protect themselves and how to attack when they need to. The brother who came to teach them was super cool, and he brought his son who's probably about 7 or 8 to be his demo. Which was  really, really cute. He even taught the kids how to wrestle 1 Fun fact : the prophet Muhammad (PBUH) used to wrestle in a masjid. It's sunnah to do so. Not wrestle like intentionally hurt, wrestle like self-defence. And not the kind punching, pulling, kicking kind of wrestle, more to grabbing and pushing, and pinning down using body weight. 

Overall it was an extremely fun and memorable experience being with these kids for Play & Pray. F&B wise, they loved the food Jiha and I provided. I think everyone went back with happy tummies. (Especially after tea, cause the cream puffs were the bomb.) But being with the kids in general, and helping them and looking out for them while they gain knowledge about Islam is an entirely different thing. Kids are like sponges, they easily absorb everything they learn, so being with them and guiding them towards the deen is overwhelming (in a good way). The feeling is amazing. You know, like, because of this Play & Pray event, the kid is going to go home excited about wanting to become a better muslim, excited about growing up to become the best person. And insyaAllah growing up to be the best muslim. How can anyone not be proud to be a part of this child's development in Islam ? I pray they grow up to be respectful, obedient, full of iman individuals. And I really hope that Play & Pray has affected them in a way that could change their lives. This won't be the last time I volunteer for Play & Pray, the project manager Brother Luqman told us that they're planning to make this a twice a month thing, so insyaAllah I'll be volunteering for the upcoming instalments of P&P. This is also just the beginning of me being a volunteer for Mercy Mission, I don't plan to just volunteer for Play & Pray. Hopefully in the near future I'll be able to volunteer for other Mercy Mission projects / events as well. 

For more information about Play & Pray : click here 

If you're interested in being a volunteer for Play & Pray, you can email the project manager at : luqman.hakim@mercymissionworld.org 

And if you're interested in being a volunteer for upcoming Islamic conferences or you just wanna know more information about them : 

iLMFEST 2015 ; The Festival of Knowledge : click here 
Yasmin Mogahed : click here 
Being ME : click here



18 comments:

  1. Izza! Are you going to yasmin mogahed's talk?

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    1. I'm planning to ! But I haven't gotten a ticket or anything, hoping to hear from them soon about being a volunteer. Are you ?

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  2. Am sorry for disturbing, where is the yasmin mogahed talk?

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    1. Oh, don't be sorry ! It's at PICC, Putrajaya on the 25th of April. 9AM - 10PM. It's called Game Changer Conference :) Yasmin is the main speaker.

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  3. I am, if you are i hope I'll get to bump into you or sthing hahah i really love your blog!

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    1. Oh insyaAllah I'll be there so if you see me around, please say hi haha. Thank you so much <3

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  4. Izza izza, one interesting challenge for you. Instead of writing in english, why dont you write one post in full bahasa. That would be fun!

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    1. Haha aw I'm so awkward when I write in BM but I'll try one day, maybe. Hehe.

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  5. dont get this the wrong way but do you get paid by becoming a volunteer ?

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    1. Nope ! :) Volunteering is basically helping out of pure sincerity and intentions. We get food tho.

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  6. Hi Izza! may i know how you saved money to buy your macbook air ? How much was it you paid cash or credit card :)

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    1. Hi ! Such a random question.. haha. But I worked. Saved up my salary money. All the other details about price etc, you can find on the Apple website :)

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  7. Congrats on getting a free duckscarves!

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    1. what colour did you get? so your recent instagram post, you looked so beautiful!

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    2. Georgette material in Espresso. Hehe. Thank you so much !

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  8. OMG GURRRL YOU WON DUCKSCARVES CRIESSS SO HAPPY FOR YOU!!! CRIESS IZZA WHEN DID CHU GET SO LUCKY HEHE HAPPY FOR YOU WOMAN ❤

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    1. HAHA THANK YOUUUUU ! I CRYYYY I ALSO DUNNO HOW I WON. THANK YOU THANK YOUS <3

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