Humble Origins, Big Impact
In 2011, the Board of the Indianapolis Muslim Community Association (Masjid Al-Fajr) voted unanimously to found a food pantry in our mosque with the goal of feeding our neighbors in need. We benchmarked local pantries for operational expertise, conducted research on food insecurity in the United States, and partnered with our weekend Islamic School to build a volunteer youth corps. Then, we cleared out an old janitor’s closet to house our infant pantry and started with a humble budget of $400 a month. The need in our community is so great that we now routinely see 450+ people at our Sunday-morning public distributions. The majority of the families we serve are immigrants from Iraq, Somalia, Sudan, Palestine, and Syria, women and children, the elderly, the disabled, and our African-American and Latino neighbors. During Ramadan our services are needed even more. At our four Ramadan distributions to date on May 20, May 25, May 27, and June 1, 2018, we fed close to 200 families. Each distribution costs about $3,000. We need your help!