We’ve Come a Long Way

I came to the UK 40 years ago, where in Leicester there used to be just two places of worship for Muslims. Now it’s very different – there are 50 in addition to accessible prayer facilities with multi-faith prayer rooms in both the public and private sectors The city is aware of our needs and it has met them. I will be forever thankful for that. I’m incredibly proud of the work that we’ve done here at FMO since our inception in 1983.

I’m incredibly proud of the work that we’ve done here at FMO since our inception in 1983. We’ve assisted the Muslim community in Leicester in any way we can. At the moment, we support a broad range of both regional and national initiatives designed to tackle extremism. We were involved in a leaflet campaign countering the inaccurate claims of groups like Daesh, we’ve published online material denouncing the actions of all forms of extremism and we’ve been outspoken when it comes to sharing our disapproval of those who promote radical ideas.

Furthermore, we have provided our community with the knowledge and understanding that’s necessary to resist and challenge nefarious values that are propagated by extremists. This tireless determination to halt the radicalisation process before it begins has earned us widespread praise.

Through the work of FMO and through the individual actions of members of our community, I feel that we have sent out a strong message: one of the UK’s best assets is our multi-faith and multi-ethnic society. In a time that false and misleading information litters popular discourse, we’ve worked hard to educate and inform other societal groups about the true nature of Islam.

We have overcome prejudice and have contributed positively to British society: we are teachers, community leaders, doctors, nurses, athletes, farmers, builders, police officers, firemen and everything in between. People see and value this contribtion, which has helped increase tolerance and encourage social cohesion. this,

Luckily, we live in a democracy; a society of choice, a luxury that many people in the world are not afforded. The Muslim community are the highest BAME voters and the amount of charitable giving from this community is high – not only within their own community but for wider society also. This fills me with pride.

My experience in England has been a positive one, but I understand that it’s not the same for everyone; for example, some Muslim women have suffered horribly because of the way they choose to dress. Despite this, I feel there is growing commitment to tackle instances of Islamophobia and understand more about the great diversity of the people in our communities. We have truly come a long way in the past 40 years – here’s to another 40.

Suleman Nagdi

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