MPCore.us – The Islamic Center of South West Florida or the Ibrahim Mosque in Fort Myers, Florida, raised funds for victims of the earthquake and tsunami disaster in Palu and Donggala. Raising is done through charity boxes every Friday prayer and October.
Not many Indonesian diaspora live in the small town of Fort Myers in the state of Florida. However, Indonesian Muslims there are known to actively worship at the Ibrahim Mosque which is also the Islamic Center of South West Florida or the Southwest Florida Islamic Center.
When successive earthquakes struck Lombok, the mosque congregation repeatedly expressed condolences to Indonesian Muslims. And when the earthquake and tsunami struck Palu and Donggala, the mosque congregation spontaneously moved to raise funds.
“They feel sad,” said Muhamad Imanudin, one of the Indonesian citizens who was active in the Ibrahim Mosque. He was moved when the mosque administrators specialized alms every Friday prayer to help disaster victims in Indonesia.
Members of the executive commission, who is also the former chairman of the Ibrahim Mosque, Khaled Bajwa explained, the mosque prepared three boxes. For two weeks, each box was placed in three mosque buildings, two in the main section, the other in the women’s section.
After the Friday prayer at the end of October, the preacher announced, the funds raised from the previous Friday prayer and on that day exceeded 5,800 dollars (around Rp. 87 million). Fundraising will continue until funding is finally sent to Indonesia.
“We’re gonna add some money from the mosque site ,” Khaled Bajwa said.
Bajwa also said that the mosque would add the money to around 5,000 dollars so that it could collect more than 10 thousand dollars.
None of the mosque congregations had ever been to Indonesia. They only know that the majority of Indonesia’s population is Muslim. The rest, according to Imanudin, worshipers and administrators of the mosque only knew Indonesia from the news on television.
But for Bajwa, Indonesia was very close to his heart because his son, a doctor, directly helped after the 2004 earthquake and tsunami in Aceh.
The Ibrahim Mosque management contacted the Indonesian consulate in Houston, notifying their efforts but decided to hand over the funds to Indonesia Relief which was considered to be more knowledgeable about its distribution.
Indonesia Relief Chairman Bambang Achirudin claimed to have communicated with Imanudin, as an Indonesian citizen representative in Fort Myers, and was ready to receive the aid funds, to immediately distribute it.