“We are many – but together we are one” – after being inspired by the many campaigns initiated around London particularly at universities such as Hertfordshire, UCL and Brunel, the students at St. Dominic’s wanted to help raise awareness for the Who is Hussain #TeamGiveBack campaign amongst teenagers from the ages of 16-18.
On the day, we expected some people to find the idea ‘lame’ and others to ignore our requests merely because we understood we were dealing with teenagers that perhaps did not care as much for such spiritual and moving stories. Contrary to our beliefs, most of the students if not all responded positively to our campaign. In fact, Muslims from different sects asked if they can help distribute leaflets, and although they told me they did not know much about Hussain ibn Ali they wanted to learn of his story, their enthusiasm is something I will truly never forget.
Not only did Hussain bring unity to the different sects of Islam at my college but the Who is Hussain campaign established unity within different religions. My Hindu friend was standing outside waving the small flag to encourage people to ask about the campaign. My Sikh friend was incredibly interested that she asked to take a few leaflets home to show her family and tell them of the story of Hussain. My Christian friend went to all her friends and gave them a bottle each telling them of the message of Hussain and my teachers who were absolutely thrilled with the initiative were asking many questions out of interest. There was not one person who was not moved by the story, the message, the spirit of Hussain.
A regular question we received was “How long did this take to prepare?” & “How hard was it to start things off”. Let me tell you that this campaign did not feel like a chore, nor was it stressful in fact It started off as a simple idea, a mere suggestion by one of the fellow sisters and all it took was a little support from the people around her to help start off this campaign. From there, the first meeting was held whereby everyone was sharing their creativity. However, it was the motivation and passion residing in the eyes of the team that led to the campaigns’ success and personally I believe that passionate individuals is really all you need to organize stalls because it is events like these that require patience, enthusiasm, dedication, compromise and PATIENCE!
Yes, just like many other campaigns we did come across various obstacles these ones ranged from a small turn up at meetings to people backing out last minute to the stall not being where we initially wanted it to be. Particularly, the fact that we were attending a catholic college which made it harder for the principle to accept our ideas and motives. However, its those obstacles that carved our memories and were the fuel to our passion. They did not stop us from organizing the campaign but in fact encouraged us to give it our all and hoped for the best of outcomes. So if you are reading this, and you are thinking about organizing such a stall or something similar please do not be disheartened by small things that go wrong. Have the right intention and give it your all, I promise it will end up better than expected!
I would like to specifically thank all the girls that helped out: Sarah, Zainab, Summana, Fatima, Sarina, Afrah, Sumayya, Sarah, Noor, Betol, Ayaat, Hajar, Reem, Reem, Batool, Reham, Shaista, Fatima, Yosser, Kareemah, Madiha And all the boys Kassim, Hussain, Saif, Irfan, Hasan.