There was Face Painting courtesy of Jacky’s Face Painting. In this photo Mila Awada has her face painted by Jacqueline ten Hartog. Morin Photo

RUSSELL – A fundraising event organized by the Rehman Muslim Association in Russell called “A Taste of Russell” took visitors to the event on a delicious sampling of different cultural-ethnic foods, and to promote multiculturalism within the township.

The event was held on March 5 from noon until 4 p.m. upstairs at the Russell Arena.

The association is in search of a space for worshipping, and the fundraiser begins its journey to raise the funds necessary to have their own space. Last summer the association opened a small mosque in Embrun with personal donations used to find a home for their members.

A statement from the association stated: “Our association consists of members from various cultures and ethnic backgrounds coming together in building a better future that empowers our youth, supports our community, and enables all those seeking spiritual connection through Islam.

Our Musalla (Mosque) is an upright place that promotes the values of moderation, kindness, charity, forgiveness, patience, perseverance and neighbourliness, in the spirit of Islamic teachings.”

A Taste of Russell featured not just great food. Organizers reached out to all businesses in the community asking for their participation. There was entertainment, face painting, a kids’ corner and a raffle.

President of the Rehman Muslim Association Adeel Mian said, “The inspiration for this event was the realization that there were so many people coming here from different cultures. We thought it would be a good idea to have something like this to raise funds and raise awareness within the community.”

He said the hope is that the association will be able to fundraise enough to build a Mosque.

“We started off as a small number of families of practicing Muslims,” said Mian.