Volunteers who hand out free dates and water to fasting motorists
By Gamal Jamil
| May 5th 2021
Being stuck in traffic as the minutes slowly tick down to iftar time can be frustrating for fasting motorists in Nairobi, especially if they do not have food or water on hand.
Hunger and fatigue behind the wheel can result in road rage and dangerous driving as people rush to make it home in time.
But help is at hand – Voice of The Poor members volunteers are spending their evenings distributing iftar (dates and water bottles) to drivers and their passengers around South C and its environs since the commencement of Ramadhan.
Jamal Abdulatif, who is the chairperson of the South C based organisation, said he understood what people were going through being stuck in traffic close to Maghreb prayers.
“I know what it feels like in that situation when you are fasting and are out at iftar time,” said the chairperson, who was handing out water bottles and dates along Muhoho Avenue. “There is an eagerness to get home quickly and break your fast,” he added.
Handing out Iftar to weary drivers and passengers is a great way to do good during Ramadhan, Najib Khan, the vice-chairman said.
“Ramadhan is a time to do good deeds and as a Muslim, it is a great thing to do, to help people break their fast. This is why we do this every evening,” observed Najib Khan.
The members together with volunteers hand out dates and water bottles to every driver, whether they are fasting or not.
“The purpose of this service is to break our fast with someone, so we do not choose who to give the iftar boxes to, Muslim or non-Muslim. It is all the same to us and we want to break our fast with them,” Jamal said.
According to the assistant Chair, Najib, the group distributes over 500 water bottles daily with the help of donors and well-wishers.
“We get support from donors and well-wishers like Major General Mohammed Badi, Director General, Nairobi Metropolitan Services,” added Najib.
The Voice of The Poor, which consists of 150 active members, was established in 2018 with their main goal being helping the less fortunate in the society and giving Iftar to people stuck in traffic during Ramadhan.
Currently, they are around South C, South B and part of Mombasa Road due to limited resources but they are calling for donors to support their initiative so that they can expand this noble cause in major roads around the city.
Apart from giving Iftar to people stuck in traffic from Monday to Saturday, they spend their Sundays in orphanages and children homes.
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