Muslim students head to Palestine for a summer of worship

By Amina Ali

Al-Aqsa Mosque in Palestine photo by Anjum Khan

DMU’s Islamic Society, in partnership with Al-Khaleel Institue, is heading to Palestine this summer.  

The trip is the biggest student retreat to the country with over 700 students from over 60 universities having registered to attend.  

Attendees will get to visit Masjid Al-Aqsa, the third holiest site for Muslims and experience historical tours and sightseeing. 

They will also learn about the history of the mosque through daily classes. 

DMU final year audiology student, Rukhsar, who is going this August said it is a: “Once in a lifetime opportunity to be able to go.” 

“Every Muslim has had Palestine close to their hearts since childhood, having heard stories about it.” 

“There are great rewards for us to pray there, as every prayer is multiplied by more than if we were praying at home.” 

Due to the popularity of previous retreats, this is Al-Khaleel Institute’s third retreat to Al-Aqsa Mosque with various Islamic Societies.

Islamic Society hosts women’s canvas painting event

by Amina Ali

The Islamic Society at DMU is starting its Women in Islam week with canvas painting on Wednesday (JAN 25).

DMU’s African & Caribbean Society offers a serious message as well as its social activities

By Beni Azakaye

One of the most established societies at De Montfort University in Leicester is aiming to show it has serious aims this year as well as being a hub of social activities.

With the first semester coming to an end, the DMU African and Caribbean Society, known as ACS, has quickly got activities up and running, as has its similar branches across all universities in the UK.

The society represents students from African and Caribbean background at DMU, bringing them together whilst also welcoming people from other races and cultures to educate and involve themselves during their time at the institution.

Malachi Robinson, president of the DMU branch, said: “Our aim for the year aim is to have serious talks about mental health in the black community, its effects and how it is being handled.

“We aim to show freshers that it is not all about the social event but also more educative events with unis like BCU, NTU and others reaching out to do the same.”

He advised any student struggling with clothing or food to get in contact with the De Montfort Students’ Union (DSU).

Malachi has been a student of DMU since October 2021 and got voted in as president of the society in June this year, alongside other committee members.

The DMU ACS was recently nominated for the prestigious award, ‘Most Improved ACS of the Year’ at the national ACS Awards, and has a dedicated committee which includes roles like President, Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer, African and Caribbean consultant, health and welfare officer.

The society tries to make students feel welcome in Leicester as most arrive from other cities. For the rest of the year, the society aims to achieve this by hosting more debates, networking campaigns, social outings and invite speakers.

The ACS mission “is to ensure our members enjoy their experience to the fullest, an everyone receives an equally beneficial experience outside of the academic classroom and basks in the enjoyable familial atmosphere.”

Maslachi added: “As a society, we want DMU to look appealing to students wanting to reply.”

Friendly: The DSU campus centre building.

Society at DMU raises awareness about Islamophobia

By Amina Ali

DMU’s Islamic Society is hosting Islamophobia Awareness Month all throughout November to raise awareness about Islamophobia and its impact.

Islamophobia Awareness Month (IAM) was founded in 2012 by Muslim organisations to showcase the positive contributions of British Muslims as well as raising awareness about how they are discriminated against across the UK.

The Islamic Society’s Head Sister at DMU, who did not want to be named, said: “Take the loan system for example.

“Islam is a whole system and within that system one of the laws is that we don’t engage with ‘riba’ which is interest.

“So, it’s really hard for Muslims to follow that law in the West, which is an example of institutionalized Islamophobia.”

She added: “Even with the hijab and niqab bans in our neighbouring countries, the governments claim to have a valid reason for them when in reality it’s just trying to put further restraints on Muslims being Muslim.”

To kick-start the campaign, ISOC will be hosting ‘Try on A Hijab’ and ‘Islamic Literature’ stalls on Wednesday (NOV23) at The Campus Centre to encourage other students to ask questions and to learn more about Muslims and Islam.

On Tuesday, November 29, the Muslim Engagement and Development Company (MEND) will do doing a talk at DMU about tackling the denial of Islamophobia that is so prevalent in British society.

The location of this talk is yet to be confirmed.

MEND is a ‘not for profit company’ which aims to “empower and encourage British Muslims within local communities to be more actively involved in British media and politics.”

Its members try to meet this aim by encouraging Muslims to vote, become politically engaged and equip them with the skills, resources and materials to contribute to the positive and sustained development of a Britain in which all members of society are valued and respected.

If you would like to learn more about Islamophobia Awareness Month or about The Islamic Society’s future events, you can follow them at @dmuisoc on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

Student feels at home with Medieval Re-enactment society.

by Charlie Ramshall

A student who joined a medieval re-enactment society at his university in Leicester with no expectation but to make friends was soon pleasantly surprised when he found that with no prior knowledge, he really enjoyed it.

Liam Cowperthwaite (right)

Liam Cowperthwaite, 19, of De Montfort University, joined the society with very little knowledge of the nature of re-enacting but soon became hooked.

“My perception as a new member is that Medieval Re-enactment is to recreate the sites and events of the past,” he said.

“So, people can learn and engage with history, different to how they would in school.”

He has made many like-minded friends along the way and encouraged others to join as he said it is fun, engaging and something you can learn as you go along.

The society focuses on medieval re-enactment which is set in the Norman era between 1066-1200s and based around the battles fought during the time.

The Medieval Re-enactment Society across the country boasts a total of over 600 members from various universities.

Liam has always enjoyed history and always wanted to immerse himself within history. Medieval Re-enactment isn’t like some societies that are solely based on the activity but is for people to engage with each other who all enjoy the same thing.

Medieval Re-enactment holds many events throughout the year, aside from the regular craft and practice sessions which take place weekly, it has regional events throughout the East Midlands and a few times a year takes part in an event called TARM/ARM.

TARM is an event where universities across the country gather to show off what they have been practicing with their very own crafted costumes and weapons which they have bought from many of the craft events throughout the year.

Liam added: “I especially enjoy Medieval Re-enactment Society because I get to hang around people who enjoy what they do and share the same interests.”