WebbStaff Note: This is part of a series of posts entitled “Muslims Making a Difference,” featuring Muslims benefiting society at different levels. To nominate someone to be profiled, please email their name, contact info and bio to: submissions[at]suhaibwebb[dot]com.
By Hafeeza Kelli Yasmin
‘Remember the day you begged me on your knees to not let you go back to your home, but all I could see was the fear in your eyes. You, my friend were bloody, bruised and beaten by him who sent you to work so you would put food on his table. All he did was take pure advantage, he would have killed you. You were on your knees because you could not stand, yet you still came to work, working, but I could see right through you’
Domestic violence is an issue within Islam which is intolerable; it is a sign of oppression, and Allah ‘azza wajal condemns oppression.
“…And Allah does not like the Thalimeen.” (oppressors, polytheists and wrong doers) (Qur’an, 3:57).
Levelling with injustice, justice also exists in this world and in the hereafter. Many of us know when one part of the ummah suffers, another part of the ummah does not sleep knowing another is suffering, and so they come together as one ummah against the injustice. The Prophet of Allah ﷺ (Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him) told us that this ummah is like one body, and when one part of the body is in pain, the other parts of the body also feels the pain.
What is Nour?
The name Nour in Arabic means angelic light, and thus a name that reflects peace, tranquillity and hope. It is a metaphor for the light at the end of the tunnel, to bring back hope in those who have fallen victims of the devastating sin of domestic violence. Nour launched its website in 2010 and has now earned the title of a non-profit charity.
Alhamdulillah, in 2009, two friends were discussing issues surrounding domestic violence that caused distress in the Muslim community. Yet, despite the number of charities out there campaigning against domestic violence, there was not a single charity aimed at Muslims who could be victims. From this discussion to the present day these two sisters are now the co-founders of NOUR and have taken that discussion into practise by helping the Muslim community who suffer from domestic violence.
‘We could have been angry or futilely reactive towards this frustration, but instead we decided to be pro-active’. -Mahfuja Ahmed CEO and Co-Founder of NOUR.
How is NOUR different?
What makes Nour stand out from all the rest is that they are able to recognise the Islamic faith and the sensitivity that comes with domestic violence. Unfortunately, many Muslims ignorantly adopt the false impression that Islam permits the act of domestic violence.
What are our goals?
Nour’s long term goals are to work towards strengthening the Muslim community, empowering Muslim women and men, and making sure that marriages are founded in solid union, not ones open to create oppression. With these aims, stronger family structures can thrive together in the community. And a nurturing environment is created for our children to grow in.
The Islamic Adviser of Nour, Imam Abdullah Hassan said,
‘This is a very sensitive issue in the Muslim community. Many women who fall prey to this vile behaviour do not come forward due to fear and also the insufficient knowledge on their part about where they may receive help. One of the ways they may contact the relevant people is by calling or e-mailing various projects and charities like NOUR and they will be dealt with with the utmost anonymity. Then an Islamic advisor may give general advice and specific instructions on how best to deal with their situation via written e-mail or if need be via telephone conversation if the victim so desires’.
How Nour can help you?
Nour provides Islamic, Health and Legal advice by those qualified. Anyone can contact the Muslim Community Helpine which is open Monday to Friday between the hours of 10am to 1pm and the caller will be treated with absolute confidentiality. If anyone has general queries online, they may e-mail Nour at: firstname.lastname@example.org. The online service offers an Advisers Contact Form; here, anyone can explain their unique situation and receive a quick and effective response.
For women who have a story for every scar, bruise, and broken bone, there is Nour –Domestic Violence, to provide strength, support, and solace. We do not forget that if it were not the will of Al-Asim The Protector, none of the work Nour has done would have been possible. Truly in Allah ‘azza wajal we place our trust.
“whereas physically beating another person is completely forbidden in Shari`ah.”- (Qur’an, 4:34)