The first ever Madrasah Retreat was held in Dar es Salaam by AFTAB in which 27 Representatives/Heads from Madaris of 9 Constituent Jamaats converged consisting of:
- Dar es Salaam Boys and Girls Sections
- Lubumbashi also representing Kinshasa
Group Photo – Facilitators, Organizers and Participating Madaris
The objectives of the Retreat were as follows:
- to synchronize Madrasah institutions for the further spiritual development of our children.
- to create a network and platform for the sharing of best practices amongst our Madaris
- to overcome the common challenges and contemporary issues that our youth face today and working on solution models that can be then implemented collectively in our respective Madrasahs.
The program commenced on Friday 18th August at 19:30 with an opening speech made by Seyed Hassan Naqvi who said:
“My hope for this retreat is that we can lay a foundation for collective and collaborative success, that we sow the seeds to join together and find true common ground with all the Madrasahs, and that it leads us to a plan and vision that bring to fruition our shared dreams and hopes for this great institution.
Our cooperation is a defining feature of today’s needs and challenges facing our Madrasah. It lies at the heart of solutions. and this collaboration is growing even more important in this fast-changing world of rising challenges. All of us represent a powerful institute that must deliver results for the children and the future of our community.
I count on you to bring your best ideas to our discussions so we can make a difference for them, their families, our community and our future.
You, as organization leaders, have the vision, the knowledge, the ability and the experience to help us pave our way into the future.
I thank each of your for attending and bringing your expertise to our gathering.”
This was followed by an introduction session and a discussion on Qualities of a Leader from the Teachings of Imam Ali (as) facilitated by Sis Shaida Abdulrasul.
Saturday 19th August, the program started at 9.00 at Mehfil e Abbas with a presentation by each Madrasah on their history, structure and strengths.
This was followed by very interactive group discussions on challenges revolving around 4 criteria namely;
- Extracurricular/Student Empowerment.
This was followed by each group presenting the challenges identified.
Later in the afternoon, Dr. Zohraida Karim who holds PhD in Early Childhood Education gave a presentation on Childhood Development.
Dr. Imran Hassam gave a presentation on Adolescent Mind and how best to understand teenage behaviour to improve interaction with them.
Both the above presentations were well received and a very thought provoking discussion followed.
In the evening a session facilitated by Br. Fazleabbas Chandoo was held on the progress of Madrasah Centre of Excellence. The Head of the MCE Curriculum Development, Sheikh Safdar Jaffer joined in through Skype.
The group converged once again on Sunday 20th August at 9:00 and further discussions and clarifications on the MCE took place with the Chairman of AFTAB, Seyed Hassan Naqvi.
Later on, the participants converged into 4 groups to discuss and share best practices of the participating Madrasah, sharing of which enlightened the others to learn from and consider for their Madaris.
The afternoon session started off with further discussions and brainstorming of solutions for the challenges brought up, resulting in the creation of a structure for common guidelines for Madaris to follow and work upon by a specific timeline conformed by all.
All the Madaris left with more of a mission to serve, having found common ground and having initiated a network that never existed before.
The retreat ended with a scrumptious dinner on Sunday night where Participants had further opportunity of bonding together.
Common Guidelines – The Outcome of The Retreat!
Seyed Hassan Naqvi, the Chairman of AFTAB on behalf of the Board extends a very special thank you to the following:
- AFED Office Bearers and Secretariat
- Daressalaam Jamat for providing the venue
- The Jamaats of Arusha, Dar es Salaam, Lubumbashi, Moshi, Mombasa, Mwanza, Nairobi, Tanga and Zanzibar for facilitating participation of their Madaris.
- The Heads of madaris and their team for their participation
- Shaida bai Abdulrasul for facilitating the opening session.
- Sis Sanjida Rashid, Dr. Fatema Meghji and Br. Shabbirhussein Khalfan for facilitating the sessions.
- Dr. Zohraida Karim and Dr Imran Hassam for their presentation
- Br. Ali Manekia, Br. Mubashir Sheriff, Sis Sabira Sadak and Volunteers of the Development Society under Dar es Salaam Tabligh subcommittee
- Caretakers of Imambargah and Mehfil, Sis. Zaheera Abdulrasul and Sis Shamila Zaver.