Muslim Sisters of Éire welcome Syrian families
2018-07-01 12:53:59 -

By Barbara Filaih


Volunteers from the Muslim Sisters of Éire (MSOE) hosted an Eid party for recently arrived Syrian refugees at the Islamic Cultural Centre in Clonskeagh on Saturday 23 June.


The event, held in association with Human Appeal, was also an opportunity to mark World Refugee Day for the Syrians who are currently living in direct provision in the Roscommon area.


The day began with a private reception for the families led by Ibrahim Halawa, with short speeches by MSOE co-ordinator Lorraine O’Connor, Culture Minister Josepha Madigan, Sheikh Hussein Halawa, Brother Ahmed from the Islamic Cultural Centre and Brother Belkacem from Human Appeal.

Shoeboxes with Eid presents were presented to the children, while the adults received their own containing much needed toiletries. The children also got to take home goody bags full of sweet treats.


MSOE co-ordinator Lorraine O’Connor said the morning was “a huge success”.


“This enormous task could not have been achieved without the efforts of some very dedicated individuals and groups,” she added, praising the efforts of the Islamic Cultural Centre and Human Appeal, the Department of Justice for sponsoring transport for the families, and all those who donated items for the gift boxes.


“We would like to acknowledge our donors from the UK, Kuwait and Pakistan. Also a shout out to Food Cloud who helped us with treats and goody bags for the children,” said O’Connor.


“Last but not least, we would like to thank our team of volunteers who worked tirelessly for months to make this day possible form collecting and sorting shoe boxes, to wrapping gifts and packing goody bags and also running the event from morning to evening. Without their hard work, none of this would have been possible.”


After lunch, the Eid Intercultural Festival was opened to the public where families perused variety of stalls selling books, clothing, home decorations and food. Visitors also enjoyed the barbecue, ice cream, face painting and henna, the petting zoo and clown show.

The festival was also a day to celebrate the work of MSOE volunteers who provide hot meals and drinks for the homeless at the GPO in Dublin every Friday evening.


On Friday 8 June, MSOE hosted their ‘Big Iftar’ where they broke their daily Ramadan fast with the homeless.

Then on Wednesday 13 June, MSOE volunteers provided ingredients and were cooks for the day at Merchants Quay Homeless Service, where they prepared a three-course lunch for the service users.


The MSOE operate an open-door policy and welcomes people of all faiths or none. To donate or volunteer, contact the MSOE via

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