FOSIS wishes Eid Mubarak and donates gifts to children’s hospital
The Federation of Student Islamic Societies (FOSIS) in the UK and Eire today wished everyone Eid Mubarak.
Omar Ali, President of FOSIS said today, "As we reach the terminal of this year’s month of fasting during Ramadhan, we would like to take this opportunity to wish you all Eid Mubarak. This joyous and blessed occasion will be marked by Muslims across the world that will be united in their celebration of this festival."
Omar Ali, President of FOSIS and Omar Hajaj, Head of Campaigns of FOSIS presented tens of Eid gifts (donated by Aljumuah Magazine) to sick and ill children at Great Ormond Street Hospital in London.
Omar Ali, further added, "Whilst many will celebrate Eid with their families and friends in good circumstances, we should also utilise this day as a reminder to share the happiness of Eid with those in more difficult situations. Sharing Eid gifts with those in children’s hospitals is one of the many ways we can share this wonderful day with others. Let us always remember those less fortunate than us in our prayers and actions."
1. FOSIS (est. 1963) is the umbrella organisation of student groups in colleges and universities throughout the UK and Ireland, representing over 100,000 Muslim students.
2. For pictures of the delivery of gifts to Great Ormond Street Hospital visit our facebook page.
July 2013 Blog
Omar Ali| President
Bismillahi rahmani raheem
I start by praising Allah (glorified and exalted be He) and then sending peace and blessings upon His messenger Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him), the Companions and all the righteous believers until the Day of Judgement.
Assalamu alaykum wa rahmutallahi wa barkatahu my dear and beloved FOSIS Family
I pray this reaches you all in the best of health and eeman.
My name is Omar Ali and I joined my ISOC almost 6 years ago since then I have held the positions of ISOC President, FOSIS South Chair, FOSIS Vice-President of Islamic Societies, FOSIS President and almost one month ago I was re-elected by council to become the FOSIS President for a final year. Last year I completed my master’s in ‘Conflict, Security and Development’ at the University of Sussex, having previously studied Economics and Management at an undergraduate level and Law at a postgraduate level.
First and foremost, Ramadhan Mubarak! I would also like to officially welcome you all to the NEW FOSIS YEAR :). Since the turn of the new FOSIS year, we have been busy handing over across the organisation, preparing for a bright year ahead of us. There were many great successes last year that need to be built upon but also shortcomings (such as the FOSIS Annual Conference) which need to be rectified. We held our first NEC face to face meeting in the FOSIS HQ recently and Alhamdulillah it was a great success as we laid down our organisational aims and objectives as well as creating a bond of brother/sisterhood in our executive committee (including football for the brothers).
I thought that there is no better time to ponder over the great opportunity Allah has granted us than during Ramadhan and thus share with you a reminder that I shared with Team FOSIS. Whilst Ramadhan is the only time of the year every one of us will be having a date every night (lol) I also encourage you all to over the days and nights of this month, ponder over your and our role in serving Allah in FOSIS/ISOC and if you have time write it up and share it.
The Vision of a Muslim
The vision of the Muslim in this world is to worship Allah alone and to be His vicegerents on this earth by submitting to His will, loving Him and His commands and establishing His word as the highest. This is evident in the following verses of the Qur’an:
“Say: Truly my prayer and my service of sacrifice, my life and my death are [all] for Allah, The Cherisher of the worlds: No partner has He: This I am commanded and I am the first of those who submit to His will.” – Qur’an 6:162-163
In another verse of the Qur’an, Allah says that both jinn and mankind have only been created to worship Him:
“I have only created jinn and humankind so that they worship Me.” – Qur’an 51:56
Furthermore, in other verses, Allah explained that the function of man is to be His vicegerent. Allah says:
“Behold, your Lord said to the angels; I will create a vicegerent on earth...” – Qur’an 2:30
“It is He who has made you vicegerents of the earth...” – Qur’an 6:165
In understanding the verses above, worship (ubudiyya) goes beyond prayer, charity and fasting – a true state of worship means for Islam to totally encompass your life from the age of adulthood to the moment of death. The famous scholar from our pious predecessors, al-Hassan al-Basri, would say “O youth! Seek the hereafter, for we often see people pursuing the hereafter and finding it as well as the dunya (worldy wellbeing), but we have never seen anyone pursue the dunya and gain the hereafter as well as the dunya.” This state of worship to Allah (glorified and exalted be He) described by al-Hassan, puts the akhira (hereafter) as the total focus that encompasses your day to day life whilst the pursuit of the dunya is only in addition to it. The story of Imam Ahmed Ibn Hanbal (one of the four Imams of the main schools of thought and one of the greatest activists in Islamic history) at his deathbed is a true example of this purpose manifest. When his last visitors came to him before his soul was taken, they found an open inkwell next to his bed – shocked, they enquired if he had been writing (on Islam) even in his state of near death – to which Imam Ahmed affirmed stating that true abid (worshipper) does not cease to pursue the pleasure of his Lord until he enters the grave and only death has ceased his/her pursuit. Thus, one can identify the difference in the understanding of the individual who is involved in their ISOC or FOSIS whilst at university but their contribution to Islamic work ceases once they start a working life and the individual who relentlessly continues their Islamic work with similar vigour even after university life has been completed. It is the latter that has fully understood what it means to worship Allah.
Furthermore, in understanding our role as vicegerents to Allah in this world:
The mission of being the deputy of God is not a monopoly of apostles and messengers who are sent to guide people, nor is it confined to kings, governors, or high officials who are elected or appointed to administer the affairs of nations. It is a mission open to every human being. Every individual is responsible for people and things in his own sphere of influence.
The Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) was the embodiment of Islam, the walking Qur’an, and the mercy to mankind. Those who sought the pleasure of their Lord drew close to the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) – farmers, artists, warriors, thinkers, businessmen/women, governors etc – yet it was initially only the Makkan minority that stood firm. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) polished each of his companion’s strengths, weaknesses, character traits, skills and most importantly their eeman – and it was this that created a leader-full nation that then dispersed from their dessert towns to change the world one community at a time. Muslims thus became the leaders of humanity – as Allah (glorified and exalted be He) has said:
“You are the best of nations raised up for (the benefit of) men...” – Qur’an 3:110
The companions went on to build empires, unify nations and cradle the blessed generations that followed them. It was this process of creating leaders of humanity that one by one turned the cogs of Islam. However, most striking was that within this process, at any given stage, you would always find each cog turning perfectly in the same direction, at the same speed, with the same vision.
Our constitutional vision reads:
“We envision a world where every Muslim is a leader for their community.”
When we say leaders for their communities, we envision our contemporary pioneers and superstars of today not defined by the positional leadership necessarily but rather by their phenomenal nack of brining a greater good to humanity – indeed the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “The best of people are those that bring the most benefit to mankind.”
In the same way the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) would lead, inspire and turn the cog of the companions (such as Abu Bakr, Aisha, Omar and Hafsa) – FOSIS and its committees should be undertaking the same process and turning the cogs of ISOCs and their committees. And the same way the companions of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) would turn the larger cog of tribes and societies (such as the Aws and Khazraj in Madinah) – ISOCs and their committees should turn the larger cog of Muslim students on their campuses. And the same way the Islamic tribes and societies turned the larger cogs of nations and empires (Khulafa Rashideen) – Muslim students should lead in changing the world!
Toolkit to get through FOSIS/ISOC
1.Be sincere: It is what almost every book of hadith starts with. Remember why you are here and who you do this work for. Remember that Allah's commands have bound us and that our sincerity towards Him also means to be sincere to all those who believe.
2.Your position is a trust: Imagine someone gave you the responsibility over the eeman, livelihood, actions, welfare etc. of thousands of Muslims. Well, it's a reality. Allah says, “O you who have believed, do not betray Allah and the Messenger or betray your trusts while you know [the consequence].” 8:27. This is huge, respect your trust and make it a means for your paradise.
3.Remember you duties to Allah: FOSIS is a privilege, a massive opportunity and huge blessing but remember you must first fulfil your obligatory deeds with Allah i.e. your salah in the correct time and place for example. Omar Bin Khattab (the second khalifa of Islam and companion) said, “We were a people who lived in humiliation and then Allah gave us honour through Islam. Accordingly, if we were to seek honour through anything other than Islam, Allah would humiliate us once again.” Seek Allah's pleasure first and within that in the obligatory deeds first.
4.Have the best of manners and etiquettes: The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) said that he only came to perfect good manners. Be kind and gentle - every person in FOSIS/ISOC is a believer of Allah and it is an obligation upon us to show them our kindness. Consistent rudeness or harshness despite hard work and dedication is akin to a few drops of sour vinegar that spoils pure clean water and is no longer fit to drink. Allah says, “The believers are but brothers, so make settlement between your brothers. And fear Allah that you may receive mercy.” 49:10
5.Seek deep knowledge: The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Seeking knowledge is an obligation upon every Muslim.” Deep knowledge means you are able to combine the above correctly and doesn't mean how many courses you have been to or how many quotes you can reel out. With more responsibility comes more of a need to grow in knowledge, so plan it out.
6.Know your enemy: Who is your enemy - it’s the shayateen. There is nothing more that Iblees and his devilish crew would like to see than our organisation/ISOC fail due to bitterness, evil, suspicion, backbiting, lies and of course deviation from the correct path. Watch out! Be on your tip toes.
7.Be grateful: Always be pleased with what has been decreed by Allah. In good and bad, through success and difficulty. This path with patience leads to success.
8.Improve:The Prophet Muhammad (Peace and blessings be upon him) said: ”He whose two days (of life) are the same (making no spiritual progress) is at loss.” Admit where you went wrong, say sorry, find out ways to improve, find out where you are strong, persevere through everything, build yourself - you are great so make yourself even better. This includes dua, dua and more dua!
There is a huge mountain of work ahead of us for the remaining 11 months of this FOSIS year. Our ambitions and goals are high and we ask Allah (glorified and exalted be He) to assist us and grant us success. May Allah guide us to success, unity, eeman, forgiveness, mercy, patience and lead us through this work to Firdous, the loftiest parts of paradise.
Jazakum Allah khayran
Omar Ali (FOSIS President)
July 2013 Blog
Zain Malik | VP Training & Human Resources
In the Name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful
Assalaamu ‘alaykum warahmatullah wabarakatuh
To quickly introduce myself – I am Zain Malik Vice President for Islamic Societies. Graduate in Law and just completing the Legal Practice Course at De Montfort University - Leicester.
This month has been a month of a lot of documents being prepared and written up behind the scenes. Such as potential contracts for NEC members, a draft disciplinary code and plans to finish off the Team FOSIS Handbook by September. There has also been some regulation to monitor recruitment. Furthermore, I’ve had to deal with a number of upset volunteers from the Annual Conference and an evaluation meeting is unfortunately still pending.
Moreover, I’m currently working with NEC members, giving them some mini inductions into FOSIS as many are new and generally guiding them to set-up and get started with their committees. This will follow with specific training for committee members and inshaAllah once we can get hold of a budget, we can make plans for the Team FOSIS Training Weekend.
If you are interested in joining the Federation please fill out this form here: http://bit.ly/15hhN6W
or drop me a line at:
Your brother in Islam,
July 2013 Blog
Camillia Khan| Head of Communications
Asalamualaykum wa Rahmatullah,
I hope and pray that you're all well and that you're making the most of Ramadan and it's many blessings.
I'm Camillia, and I've been elected as your new Head of Communications for the coming year. I've just completed my BA in English Literature at the University of Sheffield, where I was actively involved on my Islamic Society committee, and this is also my second year in FOSIS. InshaAllah I hope, in the coming year, to utilise any experience and skills which I have to develop the communication across FOSIS internally within Team FOSIS and the various committees but also externally with our affiliated ISocs and Muslim students.
I've been busy in the past few weeks setting up and changing over the eGroups of the various FOSIS committees, which is much more time consuming than it sounds :) I've also been contacting the communications committee over email and am currently in the process of individually calling each Gen Sec and Communications officer, and we've had some really fruitful conversations about where we see communications going in the coming months inshaAllah. We're also looking into setting up a more structured committee, and will be speaking more about this in the coming weeks before putting something final in place inshaAllah.
I'm currently setting up online training for the various tools which are essential for Gen Secs and Communications officers to really get the hang of, including MailChimp and the essentials of GMail flters. We'll also be having a full face to face training session at some point in August inshaAllah, but details for that need confirming.
On the NEC side of things, I attended my first NEC meeting in London last week, and I've been generally busy dealing with emails and correspondence from various different areas of FOSIS and updating the FOSIS Facebook and Twitter pages.
Camillia Khan (Head of Communications)
July 2013 Blog
Bashir Osman| VP Islamic Societies
Assalaamu aleykum brothers and sisters,
My name is Bashir Osman born and raised in a neighbourhood where I spent most of my days, chilling out maxing and relaxing shooting some b-ball outside the school when a couple of guys, they were up to .............. Just kidding!
The past 2 weeks since conference has been very hectic for me, from finishing off post-conference duties to getting right stuck into my new role as VP ISCC. It dawned upon me that my responsibilities has increased 7 times, it is completely different to being a regional chair. I am now directly responsible for the needs of all regions and ISocs in the UK and Ireland. It is extremely daunting when you think of it like that but now I need to fulfil what I promised to do.
For those that might not know what a VP ISCC might do, this is my constitutional role:
1. Shall aim to strengthen and support student Islamic societies.
2. Shall oversee and support the National Islamic Societies Coordinating Committee and Regional Islamic Societies Committees.
3. Shall identify the needs of Muslim students, Islamic societies and Regional Committees and represent their views at NEC level.
4. Shall ensure that the Regional Islamic Societies Chairs understand their role and support them with managing and leading their Regional Islamic Societies committee.
5. Create positive links between societies and regional committees and highlight examples of good practise.
6. Shall create communication procedure for National Executive Committee and FOSIS committees to work with Regional Islamic Societies Committees and Islamic Societies.
What have I been up to you ask?
Meetings to attend:
All the regions are now in full flow preparing themselves to support all the Muslim students in their region. I pray that Allah (swt) blesses their work and puts barakah in everything they do.
I want to remind you all that I am but a slave of Allah and very prone to making mistakes. Throughout the year I would love to improve my skills to better myself for the servitude of the Muslims. Any advice or anything that I can benefit from please contact me through the mediums given below.
Please contact me on:
Bashir Osman (VP ISCC)