On the eve of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, members of the Dar El-Eman Islamic Center and other members of Arlington’s Muslim community set out on a mission to spread kindness.
Specifically, they wanted to do something to thank the first responders, medical professionals, and other workers on the front lines of COVID-19 pandemic response.
“Part of our duty is to thank those who do good things for us,” said Murjan Altawil, a member of Dar El-Eman and the City of Arlington’s Community Relations Commission. “Part of our religion is that if you don’t thank those who do good things, it’s considered as if you’re not thankful to God.”
The group partnered with Bay 34th Street restaurant — and together, they prepared 300 fresh meals to deliver to those workers.
Their first stop was the Arlington Police Department’s South Substation.
“When we know the community backs us, it makes us feel more justified in what we do every day,” said Lieutenant Cameron Huggins. “We’re not machines, we don’t run on gasoline and oil. We all eat meals every day. Meals are a good time for officers to talk about things that have happened throughout the day. So this gives them an opportunity to unwind. We’re very grateful.”
The group then took food and water to Medical City Arlington. Mayor Jeff Williams and other members of the Community Relations Commission joined them.
“In this time of need, acts of kindness are so important,” said Williams. “And as usual, Arlington citizens are stepping up.”
“Above all else, we’re committed to the care and improvement of human life,” said Keith Zimmerman, CEO of Medical City Arlington. “And it’s really great to see the community members and community organizations come out and support us in our mission. It lifts [our employees’] spirits to know that the community is supporting the work do each and every day.”
Finally, the group dropped off food at the Arlington Life Shelter.
“The least we can do is show a small token of appreciation and be thankful for the efforts they are doing,” said Altawil.