B.C. Dodge & R. Mordant Mahon talk to Dr. Mohammed Wajid Akhter from Charity Week in this episode of “What a Relief!” — IRUSA’s official podcast.
Never underestimate the wave-making power of just one person or, in this case, just one week. In this podcast, B.C. & Mordant interview the founder of Charity Week, a campaign of Islamic Relief with the slogan “One Week. One Cause. All the difference!”
Charity Week was founded in London with a vision of unity, to see MSAs, colleges, schools and communities everywhere working together to provide real, long-term solutions for the most needy children in the world.
The project has grown from success to success since its founding in 2003, and Charity Week now takes place across three continents.
This year, Charity Week will take place at the end of October. Wajid shares with listeners what he and his team of dedicated volunteers hope to accomplish. It all started 13 years ago when he was a student.
“The thought process behind Charity Week was, we have to do something different to change the situation we found ourselves in,” he says. “The first thing they teach you in medical school is to treat the disease rather than the symptom. When we’re looking around and seeing all the suffering, there was one common denominator that needed to be addressed.”
This episode offers a chronology of an idea growing and spreading across the UK and leapfrogging to other countries. “We need to get people to work together so we can build a campaign, build a movement, to unite young people all across the world to work together and really make a difference,” he says. “The whole thing is about unity. We’ve got a whole team of volunteers working together 365 days a year for this one week.”
Last year, Charity Week raised over a million dollars, sponsoring programs such as sustainable, solar powered water towers for children in Sub-Saharan Africa who don’t have access to drinking water.
“We don’t want to provide band aid solutions anymore,” Wajid says.
Tune in to learn more about Charity Week and how you can get involved. Hear stories of how this initiative has inspired interfaith cooperation, and the incredible power of unity.
“13 years ago it didn’t exist, and now it’s in six countries, it’s growing, it’s raising over a million dollars a year, and none of that is the impressive part,” Wajid says.