At the registration table, a volunteer and Br. Mikael Abdur-Rahman have a bite to eat for breakfast as they watch the runners, and sign people in. “This is the second time we’re doing this, and I volunteer at a shelter, so I have a constant reminder of
the effect of domestic violence. We really need to raise awareness of this issue in the Muslim Community,” says Abdur-Rahman when asked about why they decided to hold this event. The Walk-a-Thon was held at the ADAMS Center in Sterling, VA.
"I hate domestic violence. I personally aim to follow the rules told by Rasulullah (peace be upon him). He is the best man on earth, who loves his wife and family most,” comments Md. Ghaziul Haq (right), a walker attending the event. On his left stands Fakhrudeen, another walker. He says “Whenever I go out, I always wear something to remember my wife, 24 hours a day. It’s like a symbol of love. I think this walk is a great idea, I enjoy the walking, it’s good exercise, and for a very important cause.”
Different domestic violence support organizations set up their tables near registration, for runners and sponsors to come and take a look in between laps.
The walk began at 9:00, and even though the air was slightly chilly, walkers were already beginning to do rounds around the path. Sohaira Sultan and Shama Shaikh, the coorganizers of this event, had originally done one earlier, in June, with a smaller turnout, and decided to do a large scale at the current time. “It DOES happen, and we need to educate the Muslim Comminuty, and show them that it’s not only physical violence, but psychological as well,” says Sultan. “Sometimes I feel like the Muslim Community lives in a bubble. Like everything is perfect inside of it. But it’s not.”