Fund-raising drive by Muslim community to help those affected by coronavirus

A man wearing a protective face mask leaves a mosque in Singapore on Feb 21, 2020. Both online and mosque collections will end on March 5. PHOTO: AFP

SINGAPORE - A fund-raising drive will be launched by the Rahmatan Lil Alamin Foundation (RLAF) together with all mosques here to support vulnerable people and families who have been affected by the coronavirus.

RLAF, which is a charity foundation set up by the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (Muis) in 2009, said in a statement on Tuesday (Feb 25) that its drive will collect funds for The Courage Fund, and will launch online on Wednesday.

There will also be a mosque donation collection from Friday at all 70 mosques in Singapore, as a way to show compassion and solidarity with fellow Singaporeans, RLAF said.

Both online and mosque collections will end on March 5.

The Courage Fund was set up in 2003 amid the Sars outbreak to help people affected by serious infectious diseases.

Vulnerable people the RLAF's drive hopes to help are healthcare workers and those whose jobs have been affected by Covid-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, such as those in the tourism, hospitality and transport industries.

Funds collected will be handed over to the Community Chest, who will channel the donations to The Courage Fund, which has received more than $1 million in donations as of Feb 15 to help people affected by the outbreak.

Members of the public can donate online through the Muslim.SG app and Muis' website.

They can also offer their donations in cash or cheque. Cheques should be made payable to "RLAF" with the words "Support for Singaporeans affected by the Covid-19 situation" along with their contact information written on the back of the cheque.

Cash and cheque donations should be sent to the RLAF office in Masjid Yusof Ishak in Woodlands Drive, or the Singapore Islamic Hub in Braddell Road.

RLAF executive director Zainul Abidin Ibrahim said the fund-raising efforts were "in line with our aim to nurture a Singapore Muslim community that participates actively in building a caring and compassionate society".

"We are hopeful that our little effort will enhance the relief for the affected parties as we band together with many other initiatives for the good of the larger Singapore family," he added.

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