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In this newsletter: 

  1. Our Interfaith Iftar Will Sell Out – Get Tickets Now!

  2. We’ve Got the Perfect Family Activity For Ramadan – MY Iftar Kitchen

  3. Purify Your Wealth by Giving Zakat – MY Project USA Fits 6 of 8 Criteria!

  4. Brighten a Needy Child’s Eid by Donating to Our Toy Drive

  5. Watch Special Guests, Hilltop Tigers Help Open New Cafe

  6. Columbus TV Stations Highlight Rec Center Progress

  7. MY Reading Warriors’ ‘World Travelers’ Learn About World Around Them

  8. Issa Jeylani Memorial Recreation Center Fundraiser

  9. Helpline: Rent & Utilities Support Information for Clients

  10. MY Deah's Warehouse Donation Bins Locations

Ramadan Happenings:

Our Interfaith Iftar Will Sell Out – Get Tickets Now!

There’s Still Time to Save on Your Tickets Before the Event

Each Purchase Helps Us Save & Empower More Children

Ramadan Kareem, Family,

We are so excited to invite all of you to grab your tickets before our 9th Annual Columbus Interfaith Ramadan Iftar & Fundraiser is sold out. Event is on Sunday, April 2. 

As in previous years, we will continue celebrating our village and the youth and their families that we have fostered together over the years. We will also be raising money to support our initiatives that have helped us in protecting and empowering our youth. 

This event was sold out at the Dublin Recreation Center last year, therefore we are moving it to the Courtyard by Marriot Columbus West to add a few more seats for the event.

Please join us to celebrate our diversity, humanity, faiths and values that have built this amazing village of ours, by breaking the bread together and listening to phenomenal, inspiring speakers. 

Seats are limited. Please make sure to register your seats now and share with your families and friends as well. We are looking forward to seeing you at the dinner.

Table of 10: $900 ǀ Adult: $100 ǀ Student: $50 ǀ Child under 10: $10 ǀ Family Childcare: $25

Add $20 to each Ticket Price at the door.

Ramadan Happenings:

We’ve Got the Perfect Family Activity For Ramadan – MY Iftar Kitchen

Sign up now to provide Iftar & Sahoor to local elderly and needy this Ramadan!

We need volunteers. You can either help bring cooked food or donate money so we can order food to feed the needy. What better way to serve Allah than by helping His less fortunate people? Please help any way you can. Any amount is greatly appreciated!

This year our aim is to feed 100-125 people a day during Ramadan, and this is not possible without your help and cooperation!

Sign-Up Links:

Link to donate money online: MYProjectUSA.org/Donors

Please designate your donation to MY Iftar/Soup Kitchen

For Questions & Help: Call (614) 905-0977

MY Project USA is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) organization. We serve local refugees, orphans, slaves, victims of abuse and other needy and poor neighbors in the Columbus and Dayton areas in Ohio. We are Zakat-eligible because it falls into six of the eight categories of Zakat as commanded by Allah SWT in the following verse of Quran.

“Zakat expenditures are only for the poor and for the needy and for those employed to collect (zakah) and for bringing hearts together (for Islam) and for freeing captives (or slaves) and for those in debt and for the cause of Allah and for the (stranded) traveler – and obligation (imposed) by Allah. And Allah is Knowing and Wise.” (Quran 9:60)

• MY Project USA Fits 6 of 8 Criteria of Zakat •

Categories No. 1 & 2: “for poor and for the needy” – This applies because we are helping poor local and refugee Muslim families.

Category No. 4: “bringing hearts together” – This applies because we serve all needy people regardless of their faith, ethnicity or race. We also work with individuals that are attracted to Island and Muslims and prefer working with us to learn more.

Category No. 5: “freeing captives” – This applies because we are addressing human trafficking, the modern-day slavery, prevention and intervention. Our focus is to free sex slaves from bondage and help them reestablish a life of their own.

Category No. 6: “paying the debt” – This applies because we take care of families, single moms and family violence victims dealing with debts and financial instability.

Category No. 7: “the cause of Allah” – This applies because we are protecting and empowering Muslim youth and families in America. Through our work, we are addressing drugs, gangs, violence, suicides, radicalization, homelessness and hunger through capacity-building of the individuals and the community. Through the documentation and publicity of our work, we week to address Islamophobia as well. Our goal is to preserve Islam and Muslim communities in America at its best.

Ramadan Happenings:

Brighten a Needy Child’s Eid by Donating to Our Toy Drive

The Columbus Muslim community is going to celebrate Eid al-Fitr, the marking of the end of Ramadan, in late April. It is a joyous occasion, but we have thousands of children within our refugee community who do not receive any gifts or toys on the Day of Eid. With your help, we can change that!

Our goal this year is to distribute at least 2,500 toys and gifts and 750 goody bags. Please sign up now and help us continue to make this a successful event. You can bring toys or donate money. 

We have four drop of locations. Once sign up, you will need to bring wrapped gifts on April 15th. There are four drop off locations. You can pick a location near you. 

After you sign up or donate, please share it with others!

MY Community Cafe:

Watch Special Guests, Hilltop Tigers Help Open New Cafe!

While the weather outside was gloomy on Friday, March 10, it was a bright and wonderful afternoon indoors at the Hilltop Youth Empowerment Center as MY Project USA held the grand opening of MY Community Cafe.

Joined by several special guests and members of the community, the ribbon was cut and delicious Middle Eastern and Pakistani food was served. Special thanks goes to the following elected officials, who all were kind enough to take time out of their busy schedules to join us: Ohio State State Senator Hearcel F. Craig, Ohio State Minority Leader Allison Russo, Ohio State Reps. Dave Dobos and Adam Miller, Franklin County Auditor Michael Stinziano and Columbus City Councilmembers Nick Bankston and Rob Dorans. 

Thanks to members of the Hilltop Tigers soccer club for joining us as well!

Located at 3275 Sullivant Ave., MY Community Cafe is a pay-forward cafe with all proceeds going to help MY Project USA feed and assist all children, elderly, homeless and other clients on the west side of Columbus. This will be a game-changer on many fronts!

We are ready to serve our community and clients at a new level. This cafe will contribute to the economy of the Hilltop area. It will serve amazing sandwiches, wraps, platters and more this Ramadan and beyond. We have a seating area for families to eat here. We are also prepared to cater for your Iftar and other parties.

MY Project USA in the News: 

Columbus TV Stations Highlight Issa Jeylani Rec Center Progress

Thank you to 10TV and NBC 4 for their recent coverage of the progress made by MY Project USA in creating the Issa Jeylani Memorial Recreation Center.

MY Project USA Founder & Executive Director Zerqa Abid was interviewed for the 10TV report, which highlighted our goal of building an indoor facility that will provide young people in the Hilltop a safe place to play all year round. The center will be named for Issa Jeylani, a 15-year-old Hilltop Tigers soccer champion who was killed in July 2022 while playing soccer with friends.

“The reason we are naming this recreation center after Issa Jeylani is that we want to make sure that people remember him as a very good kid, a soccer star, as somebody who did not die because they’re on the wrong track, but somebody who was wrongly taken away from us while he was doing everything right,” Abid told 10TV.

NBC 4 also interviewed Abid about the indoor recreation center. She called it her "field of dreams" and the perfect way to honor Issa Jeylani's memory.

“Issa was a special player, he was an amazing kid, very responsible, very good person, so it makes complete sense for us that we name this center after him,” Abid told NBC 4.

MY Project USA continues to raise funds to make the center a reality.

“I am going to knock on every single door because I don’t want to go through this pain again,” Abid said NBC 4. “I just don’t want to go through this again. We have so many precious children. We have talented, smart, good kids in our neighborhood and they deserve a safe place. We believe in it.”

Youth Development: 

MY Reading Warriors’ ‘World Travelers’ Learn About World Around Them

A special nine-week program came to a close in early March when MY Reading Warriors concluded its “The World and Me” program.

For the final week, the children read about Somalia and then let their creative sides out! Each youngster made their own flags to commemorate their own personal identities.

Our “world travelers” learned about the big, wide world around them during the program’s nine weeks – taking in lessons on many countries, including Somalia, Nigeria, Morocco, India, Myanmar, Brazil and Japan. They read about the cultures, made “passports,” played games, tried delicious foods and listened to diverse music.

MY Reading Warriors is an initiative led by youth for youth, a team of college and high school students who plan weekly programs at Eakin Elementary School to expose youngsters to books, reading, learning and, most importantly, focus on providing an emotionally safe space and mentorship for these students.

MY Reading Warriors serves 10-15 students on a weekly basis. Our team consists of the following people: Safa Mohamed, Yassmin Benhaila, Nadine Abdel Rahman, Dina Kanaan and Adam Khalifa.

MY Helpline:
Rent & Utilities Support Available At MY Project USA

We have been working very hard in securing grants and building collaboration with other partners to help our clients. Thanks to The Columbus Foundation, United Way of Central Ohio, and IMPACT Community Action, we are still able to help more of our families with their rent and utilities. If you or someone you know needs help, please ask them to contact us at (614) 905-0977 or helpadmin@myprojectusa.org.

MY Deah's Warehouse: 
8 Locations In Columbus To Drop Off Donations - Truck Pick Up Available For Large Donations

You can now drop off your donations of new and gently used clothes, shoes, books, toys and other small non-breakable items in a donation box near you. These locations include: 

  • Noor Islamic Cultural Center -  5001 Wilcox Rd. Dublin 43016
  • Masjid Nimrah - 4501 Refugee Rd. Columbus, OH 43232
  • MAS Youth Center - 4615 Northtowne Blvd. Columbus, OH. 43229
  • Turkish American Society of Ohio (TASO) - 2885 W. Dublin Granville Rd. Columbus, OH 43235
  • Ahlul Bayt Society - 2580 W. Dublin Granville Rd. Columbus, OH 43235
  • The First Congregational Church - 444 E. Broad St. Columbus, OH 43215
  • MY Deah's Warehouse - 4004 Fondorf Dr. Columbus, OH 43228. (Business Hours Only)
  • Global Gifts & Thrift - 4730 Cemetery Rd. Hilliard, OH 43206. (Business Hours Only)

We are looking for more locations. If interested in helping us or have any other questions, please contact us at warehouse@myprojectusa.org.


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MY Project USA
3275 Sullivant Ave | Columbus, Ohio  43204
614-905-0977 | info@myprojectusa.org

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