The Muslim World League is the Saudi religious political propagation machine. The Saudi’s take the mandate to jihad by immigration seriously. Quran 8:72 Indeed, those who have believed and emigrated and fought with their wealth and lives in the cause of God and those who gave shelter and aided – they are allies of one another.
An international Muslim organisation is buying houses for two families left shattered by the Christchurch terror attacks – and will fund free trips to Mecca for the pilgrimage Hajj for dozens more.
The offer to visit the holy city, by Muslim World League (MWL), extends to relatives of those killed and the injured, potentially more than 100 people.
For Ambreen Naeem, struggling financially and left to bring up two boys alone after her husband and eldest son died at the Al Noor mosque, the chance of a fresh future in a new home and a trip to Mecca will be life-changing.
“They were my two big dreams, so it will be like a dream come true,” she said.
The support of the community and the MWL was helping her get back to a normal life, she said.
“The pain will still be there, but it will be a big relief to have a house of my own.”
A second house is earmarked for Salwa Tsay, who is supporting her son and daughter after her husband, Khaled Mustafa, and eldest son, Hamza, were killed.
Tsay, who arrived in New Zealand last year from Syria, said it meant a lot as a former refugee.
“We already started our life here, we had a dream we wanted to come true in this country. What happened [on March 15] took our dream.
“I am in a rented house now, and the rent is not cheap. This house will be very good for me and my two kids to live in.”
The MWL, a non-governmental organisation based in Saudi Arabia, also wants to pay for a cultural centre in New Zealand to unite people from diverse backgrounds, which regional director Mushabab Aiban said would “make the community even more united, tighter and unbreakable”.
Aiban hopes many of those affected will be able to attend Hajj in August – and for the two houses to be bought by then.
Those unable to travel, including the injured and three pregnant widows, can go next year.
The March 15 attack robbed Naeem of husband Naeem Rashid, a banker-turned-teacher who was awarded Pakistan’s highest gallantry medal after he was killed trying to tackle the gunman, and Talha, 21, her eldest boy.
She moved out of her old home in Riccarton soon after, seeing youngest son Ayaan cry as he clutched his father’s glasses too much to cope with. She now lives in Ilam with her 5-year-old and older son Abdullah, 19.
Payments from the IRD, Work and Income and ACC leave her with less than half what the family earned before.
“It’s hard to manage power and everything with that money, so it will be a great support and help,” she said.
“It’s like a dream for everyone to have a home. It will give me a lot of peace of mind.”
A trip to Mecca for Hajj – the pilgrimage is one of the five pillars of Islam – is equally welcome, and deeply poignant.
“[Rashid] had a wish to do it this year. I think he would be very happy [about the offer]. These were his dreams as well.”
Naeem is now determined to support her sons and help them fulfil their own dreams.
She hopes to stay in Ilam, where Ayaan is settled in school and from which Abdullah can easily get to university for his engineering studies, and has started driving lessons through the Salvation Army.
Three lessons in, she is gradually gaining confidence.
“My instructors were happy that I am improving, but I am just starting from scratch. My husband always encouraged me to drive, so I am determined to learn for him as well as me.”