8th of January 2018
While New Year’s revellers slept it off in the UK’s cities, Muslim volunteers were out in force cleaning up the mess created by the night before.
Voluntary clean-ups took place in various centres including London, Cardiff, Birmingham, Huddersfield, Glasgow and Newcastle. The Ahmadiyya Muslim Youth Association claims it is part of their “religious and civic duty to help tackle the £1billion public cost of littering in the UK”.
More than 100 young Muslim volunteers took to the streets of Greater Manchester with bin bags and litter pickers immediately after morning prayer at 5am on January 1. The youngest volunteer was just seven years old.
“People really appreciated it when they saw what we were doing,” said campaign chief Abdul Lodhi. “It makes such a difference to the local area and it’s nice to see youngsters cleaning the streets as there is such a negative perception that they make all the mess.
“This is something we do every year. Cleanliness is a big part of our faith, as is serving the community.”
Meanwhile, around 50 volunteers including children and the elderly helped to clean up the streets of Huddersfield. President of the town’s Ahmadiyya Muslim Association Fatihul Haq said the group wanted to help make the town an “even better place to live in”.
And Glasgow’s Ahmadiyya Muslim community organises civic and voluntary drives throughout the year on top of the New Year’s clean-up. The group also regularly gives out food, clothes and other supplies to homeless people living on the streets on New Year’s Day.