Islamic Relief South Africa (IRSA) is one of NMCH’s major donors and focuses on child welfare, food security and emergency relief. IRSA Programmes Implementer, Taariq Mathiba, spoke to us about his role in the organisation and how IRSA’s relationship with the Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital Trust came to be.
IRSA, which is supported by Islamic Relief Worldwide, is involved in a number of sub projects like disaster relief and water projects. What is it that often leaves you inspired or amazed about the organisation’s areas of involvement?
All programmes inspire me in different ways. Emergency relief is a means of saving lives immediately, and developmental relief is a means securing livelihoods, and both inspire me in their own way.
What have been some of the most challenging moments during your time at IRSA?
Going into disaster-stricken areas moments after the catastrophe. This is when the reality sets in for the victims that they have lost everything, and that they are totally dependent on relief aid for survival.
Tell us a little more about the relationship between IRSA and Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital Trust. Why did organisation get involved in the project?
The decision for involvement was an easy one; considering that Africa as a whole only has 4 paediatric health facilities when developed countries like Canada, USA and Germany have 23, 157 and 20 respectively.
Does IRSA support any other external projects similar to NMCH?
IRSA has been involved in the building of health facilities around the world since inception, because of the number of interventions in conflict-stricken countries.
How can people get involved in IRSA’s activities?
People can either get involved with IRSA by financially supporting our projects or volunteering their time.
Visit IRAS’s website at: http://www.islamic-relief.org.za/