After working with youth for decades,
a team of teachers and youth mentors saw a need for Islamic knowledge to be delivered in a new way, one that is relevant to American Muslim youth’s real-life experiences that are engaging, enjoyable, and enduring. When searching for resources to satisfy this need, we often had to create our own lessons from scratch and develop new experiences to give our kids.
It started with youth camps in the Midwest,
getting young people out under the open sky to learn and grow. Youth camps presented a creative challenge, requiring ingenuity and organization to send kids home satisfied and happy. With each experience, that creative muscle became stronger and the demand increased steadily. Out of the day camps evolved year-long Blessed Bonds and Iron Faith Learning Circles that met every week in mosques, basements, and living rooms across our community. We saw that these programs and connections came to mean so much to our community!
We wanted to capture those ‘SubhanAllah’ moments of connection to God and community and make them a reality for young people everywhere, so we embraced the growth and started to support groups outside of Illinois. As we found joy and success in this model of community learning which God gifted us, we wanted to reinvent it and package it to be replicated across the country.
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit,
we could no longer meet in person, so we continued our Learning Circles online. Like most of the world, we began to explore what it meant to connect and learn online. In 2022, we started publishing our Companions curriculum online. In the fall of 2022, we resumed in-person Learning Circles, researching and expanding our curriculum offerings beyond the Companions, and beginning a series of online courses.
Looking ahead, we are excited to continue to expand our online course offerings and Learning Circles across the country, host training for new mentors and Parent Admin Committees, and release three new curriculum series: Worship and Wonders, the Keys to Worship, and the Prophetic Biography, God-willing.