Sumbal Naz, National Secretary Ishaat, Lajna Imaillah Netherlands
On 1 February 2020, Lajna Imaillah Rotterdam was able to host a second Hijab day event in Eendrachtsplein, The Netherlands.
This year we acquired permission for double the space we had last year. We made full use of this extra space by having an exhibition about “Women in Islam”. The exhibition disseminated information with references to the Holy Quran and hadith about the status of women in Islam, rights of women, education, marriage and hijab etc.
We also tried to answer many common misconceptions people have in their minds about Muslim women. As part of the exhibition, we displayed the Holy Quran in three different languages, as well as various books and literature. Visitors were welcome to look around our exhibition with a warm cup of tea or coffee, along with a sweet treat.
By the grace of Allah the Almighty, just like our previous experience, we were welcomed very warmly by the public who showed great interest in our message. People of all ages, men and women alike, took time out to have a look around and engage in meaningful conversation.
Over 60 people in total visited our exhibition, out of these, there were 35 ladies who were eager to try on the headscarf to see how it looked, and even to see how it felt. The ladies always had a positive reaction on wearing the headscarf, and left us with encouraging and motivating words.
Most people who visited us were happy to see the initiative we had taken to bring the hijab into light, they felt it was an important thing to do so that the negative stereotypes surrounding the hijab could be eliminated. Engaging in conversation with Muslim women themselves, also put away any thoughts in their minds about the free will or lack thereof, women have surrounding the hijab.
Hearing from us directly that the hijab does not oppress us, but in fact gives us the freedom to explore our inner capabilities, which rise far higher than our outward appearance, so with this, we are able to make a positive and definitive impact in our communities.
Thumbs up! Maybe we all can try to have such Hijab promoting stalls at book fairs across the world.