CAIR-Chicago’s Outreach Coordinator Gerald Hankerson presented a workshop to a Jewish Youth Group at Beth Emet the Free Synagogue in Evanston on Sunday, February 7. The workshop consisted of three major elements: an introduction to the fundamental concepts of Islam, a profile of Muslims in America and throughout the world, and clarifying myths and misconceptions of Islam and Muslims.
The workshop served as the kick off to an educational and interfaith program between the synagogue and the Muslim Educational Center (MEC) in Morton Grove that will run from March to May 2010. Aaron Gunning, Beth Emet’s Youth Director, coordinated the workshop in order to give the youth some context before the program started in March.
“[The youth participants] liked it. They liked being able to talk to someone who was an adult, but not that much older than them. They came away with a better understanding of what it is to be Muslim in America,” said Gunning.
Overall the workshop was an extremely rewarding experience for all involved. CAIR-Chicago was excited to collaborate with Beth Emet.
“Establishing paths of understanding and openness is important to today’s youth—they are eager to learn from one another’s cultures, including faith traditions,” explains Hankerson. “CAIR-Chicago will continue to work towards fostering this kind of genuine engagement and awareness between Muslims and Jews, especially for our rising young leaders of the future.”