A comprehensive study by the Illinois Muslim Civic Coalition will give local and state officials a snapshot of the Muslim community in the state.
“Our community sits at the intersection of race, class, faiths, and every other type of diversity,” said Co-Founder and President of Illinois Muslim Civic Coalition Dilara Sayeed. “What we really want to understand is the needs and assets of this community.”
Who’s Helping With The Study?
The report has been years in the making and will be conducted with the help of the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding (ISPU), and the Institute for Policy and Civic Engagement at College of Urban Planning and Public Affairs at the University of Illinois at Chicago.
The study is still being finalized, but will have a survey and a focus group component.
Need For The Study
The study will be the first of its kind in Illinois according to Sayeed and the President of the ICN Kashif Fakhruddin.
“Using this report we would know the different diversities within our community around the Naperville area,” said Fakhruddin. “That will help us with hosting different types of activities and events.”
ICN will host events and focus groups advertising the study and the different programs the group offers irrespective of a community member’s faith.
Timeline & Ultimate Goal of The Study
Initial funding for the study is already complete. Through the rest of the year, data will be collected and early next year a report of the study will be finalized.
Once complete the hope is that businesses, legislators, community members, and others will have a better understanding for community needs for development programs, investing, activism, and advocacy.
“Legislators are already reaching out our communities and asking [‘what do you need’],”said Sayeed. “Redistricting is happening now, allocation is happening now post-census work. This data will be invaluable to help legislators understand where government resources need to be spent.”
To learn more about the study you can visit the Illinois Muslim Civic Coalition’s website.
Naperville News 17’s Christian Canizal reports.
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