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AmericasCharity

George Floyd’s Death Mobilizes More Than 50 Tons of Food Aid to Minneapolis

AmericasCharity

George Floyd’s Death Mobilizes More Than 50 Tons of Food Aid to Minneapolis

“Godliness means acting quickly with compassion for the vulnerable,” Demir said. “We didn’t wait for an invitation. Right away, we moved to bring these victims of racism and persecution the most basic sustenance of life cut from them: fresh fruits, vegetables, and milk.”

“Godliness means acting quickly with compassion for the vulnerable,” Demir said. “We didn’t wait for an invitation. Right away, we moved to bring these victims of racism and persecution the most basic sustenance of life cut from them: fresh fruits, vegetables, and milk.”

Brutality isn’t new to our eyes nor our ears. 

As a humanitarian organization, we see its different forms in racial and religious persecution, civil and international war and, as was the case with George Floyd and Derek Chauvin, we have seen white-on-black police brutality’s form.

We, Zakat Foundation of America, are a year shy from being a 20-year-old nonprofit. The losses we’ve seen and felt since 2001 are too difficult to count — emotionally and logistically. We get news of beneficiaries in remote parts of their countries dying to unjust causes and conditions, grieving and honoring them appropriately for being our light. 

And we see cases like George Floyd’s. He was not one of our beneficiaries. He was not one of our donors. But he was one of us. His humanity was no less than anyone else’s. 

So we honored him as another source of our light. We put humanity above all else because we can’t bear to sit still upon seeing injustice. We put our humanity first because that’s the first thing taken when brutality strikes in its different forms. 

We couldn’t cover our ears when George Floyd was killed and people from Minneapolis, the rest of the state, country, and world cried for him as he cried for his mother. To honor him and Minneapolis’ needy, Executive Director Halil Demir and others from our team drove about 18 tons of fresh produce June 3 to George Floyd’s memorial site. They worked with Congresswoman Ilhan Omar among other Muslims standing together for justice to deliver fruits, vegetables, milk, and even personal protective equipment to the people whose normal means of access are inadequate or even cut off. 

“Faith is action, not only what you believe in,” Demir said that day through his face mask, mindful of COVID-19’s spread risks in Minneapolis, while passing out produce, milk and dry-goods boxes to people out of a refrigerated truck trailer Zakat Foundation donors took the responsibility of filling.

Protests for justice and curfew clampdowns affect access, limiting the times and places people can get their groceries. The access limitations are amplified for those in lower-income areas with fewer options to purchase from.

As stores and other marketplaces boarded up for fear of loss and damage, we felt morally obligated to provide for those who felt the direct pain. And we sent another roughly 18 tons two days later, on June 5th, when we saw that the need was still there.

Congresswoman Ilhan Omar and Zakat Foundation Executive Director Halil Demir work together to provide for Minneapolis’ disparaged. Photo credit: Zakat Foundation of America.

“Godliness means acting quickly with compassion for the vulnerable,” Demir said. “We didn’t wait for an invitation. Right away, we moved to bring these victims of racism and persecution the most basic sustenance of life cut from them: fresh fruits, vegetables, and milk.”

But that invitation came later nonetheless.

And another 18 tons of produce on June 12th, as Congresswoman Omar requested our support while the community still grieved and lacked access to wholesome, nutritious food. 

“I appreciate that Zakat Foundation of America thought of us and came out to Minneapolis with food aid during this difficult time. It means a lot,” Congresswoman Omar said.

This third distribution comes just days after thousands gather in Houston for George Floyd’s funeral. Protests for justice over his killing continue still, having reached all 50 states. 

Floyd was 46 when he died handcuffed, surrendered, face-down on a street in Omar’s district — pleading for breath, calling for his mother, throttled beneath the knee on his neck of then-19-year veteran, white Minneapolis police officer Chauvin on Memorial Day, which fell May 25 this year.

“Beware of the supplication of the oppressed, for there is no barrier between it and God.”
— Prophet Muhammad, upon him be peace. 

Inaction in the face of oppression is injustice. Silence is violence. Photo credit: Zakat Foundation of America.

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