Cake deliveries enable humanitarian aid to be sent.
Over 2,000 sweet-toothed homes in Birmingham have helped raise money for aid to Syria as a result of an initiative that has seen cakes delivered around the country during Ramadan.
In total Islamic Relief’s ‘Cakes4Syria’ fundraising effort has seen volunteers – all fasting for Ramadan – deliver over 15,000 chocolate cakes across the UK and raise over £75,000 for humanitarian aid.
The fundraising scheme draws to a close today and the order line will close on Friday at 5pm. The last cakes will be delivered on Sunday night.
Cakes4Syria was launched in Bradford last year and has gone national this year as the UK’s Muslims are becoming increasingly concerned about the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Syria. Their money-raising efforts come as British imams have called for Muslims to help Syrians peacefully from the UK.
So far the scheme has raised £76,705 in its first week alone, with more funds expected to flow in during the last few days of the appeal. Famous takers so far include Jon Snow and political journalist and author Mehdi Hasan. Zia Salik, Islamic Relief’s Community Fundraising and Volunteer Manager, said: “It’s the last few days of Cakes4Syria and we’d urge everyone – Muslims and non-Muslims alike – to order one of these tasty treats and support Syrians in desperate need. Your order will help Islamic Relief to do life-saving work in Syria.
“This is an idea that came from the grassroots, from our volunteers, and the response has been just fantastic. The team of volunteers have done an amazing job in the last few weeks and their efforts have helped raise thousands for one of the world’s worst humanitarian crises.”
So far London is the top city, with 2,336 cakes sold in the capital, followed by Birmingham at 2,192 and Bradford at 1,968.
Cakes can be ordered at any time by calling the Cakes 4Syria call centre on 01274 952144 or text 07511 724 372 (12 noon -8pm) or spread the word using #Cakes4Syria. The cakes cost £10 – the same as from other retailers – but of this £5 is donated to Islamic Relief’s Syria appeal. Deliveries take place on Sundays and Thursdays until the end of Ramadan.
Cakes4Syria was started last Ramadan by 23-year-old Islamic Relief volunteer Sibbat e Noor, a trainee solicitor from Bradford. The delivery operation has expanded from a few volunteers with four dedicated mobiles last year to a call centre with 30 staff and 130 drivers across the country, all of whom are volunteers.
Sibbat said: “It’s just brilliant. I can’t believe it’s gone national. The response we’ve had this year has been almost overwhelming. The atmosphere on the team here in Bradford is excellent, we are really pulling together to do something for the people of Syria.”
Over six million Syrians need humanitarian aid. Around four million are internally displaced within Syria and there are more than 1.7 million refugees, making Syria one of the worst humanitarian disasters of modern times.
Funds raised from Cakes4Syria will help children like 12-year-old Khaled Ibrahim, who was playing outside his home when he was shot in the foot by a sniper. Unable to walk, he had to crawl to safety as the battle continued around him. His brother saved his life by taking him to Bab Al Hawa hospital in Idlib, where Islamic Relief is funding medicine and equipment. After extensive surgery, Khaled’s foot was saved. Read Khaled’s full story at: www.islamic-relief.org.uk/case-studies/syria-looking-after-khaled/.