On Friday, July 13, 2012, the program of community blood drives promoted by Community Builders Chicago (CBC), this summer came to a conclusion.
Over 210 area Muslims volunteered at different mosques and Islamic Schools to donate and give the Gift of Life, so some sick or injured person in their neighborhood could benefit from their act of selfless generosity. The final drive was scheduled at ICCI on Belmont Ave, and the Potter Road Mosque in Des Plaines.
Explaining the program, Munir Chaudry, President of CBC said â€œIt was a simple idea that inspired the project:Firstly, to provide some help during the lean months of summer when supplies of blood are low and demands for blood are high. Second, to honor the nationâ€™s brave ones whose sacrifices are remembered on Memorial Day, by offering our own blood as a gesture of solidarity with themâ€.
The donors who participated were both young and old, both men and women, and from every ethnic background. There were some who donated for the very first time. There were others who were card carrying donors, who give with regularity. Some eagerly came forward but could not qualify due to the stringent criteria that the blood banks mandate. Others wanted to donate but could not wait due to the constraints on their time. Better logistical arrangements will have to be made to accommodate them in the future.
All this was accomplished with little fanfare and without the blinding glare of the media getting anyone uncomfortable. â€œIt is just as well that we practice such acts of charity with solemn grace and dignity in the quiet privacy of our personal convictionsâ€, remarked Azher Quader, Executive Director of CBC. â€œThe rewards of such giving not seeking the adoration of the public are indeed higher as the Quran reminds usâ€ he explained.
CBC wishes to thank all who donated and all who participated.
A total of 213 pints of blood were donated exceeding the target of 200 initially set for this year. â€œThis potentially will benefit over 600 patientsâ€, said Quader â€œfor many of whom this generous gift will be lifesavingâ€.He concluded,â€As we commence a month of prayer and fasting this Ramadan, let us also pray for the health and recovery of those of our neighbors who are sick and ailing and for Allahâ€™s blessings and reward on those who gave the Gift of Life so others may live.â€
Mr. Chaudry added â€œWe wish to thank Life Source, American Red Cross and Heartland for their tremendous support in providing the technical services and the staff to make these drives possibleâ€.
The following Centers participated in the drives:
Downtown Islamic Center (DIC), 231 S. State St, Chicago, IL 60603
Muslim Community Center (MCC), 4380 N. Elston Ave, Chicago, IL 60641
Islamic Community Center of Illinois (ICCI), 6435 W. Belmont Ave, Chicago, IL 60634
Aqsa School, 7361 W. 92nd St, Bridgeview, IL60455
the Prayer Center of Orland Park, 16530 104th Ave, Orland Park, IL60467
American Islamic Association (AIA), 8860 W. St. Francis Rd, Frankfort, IL 60423
Islamic Foundation North (IFN), 1751 Oâ€™Plaine Rd, Waukegan, IL 60048
Muslim Education Center (MEC), 8601 N. Menard St, Morton Grove, IL 60053
Islamic Community Center of DesPlaines, 480 Potter Rd, DesPlaines, IL 60016
Community Builders Chicago is a grass root community organization whose mission is the empowerment of people thru education and networking. For more info visit www.mycomunitybuilders.com.