DMU Muslim prayer rooms re-open after months of refurbishments

By Alice Wright

The Muslim prayer rooms in the Portland building at De Montfort University have re-opened after undergoing two months of refurbishments.

The new prayer room

The two prayer rooms have been fitted with an induction loop system to assist hearing and have been made more wheelchair-accessible, while also increasing the capacity to about 400 due to high demand.

Imam Mohammed Laher said: “We get approximately 1,000 students and staff, the prayer rooms were too small and there were a lot of students who wouldn’t come because they said whenever we come it’s always full, hence the expansion.

“If it wasn’t for the prayer room the students would be reading in lecture rooms, classrooms, corridors, libraries, so having a dedicated space makes it so much easier.”

The Imam provides religious and spiritual support for students and staff, but general wellbeing and guidance is also provided during the day on a one-to-one or group basis.

The Prayer rooms are open for both students and staff on Mondays to Fridays from 8am until 9pm during term time. The prayer room entrance can be found at the rear entrance of Portland building, through the car park.

Prayers take place four times a day and the times for December can be found here

Leicester charity wraps Christmas presents to raise money

By Alice Wright

Volunteers for Leicester Children’s Holidays are offering to wrap people’s Christmas presents to raise money for disadvantaged children to go on holiday.

Wrapped up: Volunteers (left and right) and Nominations Coordinator Michelle Cullen (middle)

The charity is one of the oldest in Leicester and provide free respite breaks for children aged eight to 11 who face difficult circumstances at home. It has provided more than 60,000 free holidays to children in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland.

Its volunteers are wrapping people’s Christmas presents in the Highcross shopping centre in exchange for a small donation but are also selling stocking fillers and toys to help raise money for their charity.

Nominations co-ordinator Michelle Cullen said: “The money goes directly to helping children, so it will go to fund either the holidays we take them on, or it will go to fund social care or clubs.

“Say we have a child that has an opportunity to go away, either on a day trip or residential or an activity or therapy, but they can’t afford to do it, so we offer to help fund that child to do that as well.”

To find out more information visit the charity’s website or its visitor centre located in Highcross shopping centre next to the Post Office.