By Javed Mohammed
I recently had the incredible opportunity to visit Cape Town, South Africa to attend the grand opening of the Givelight Foundation Cape Town Home for orphaned girls. I met up there with Sister Dian Alyan, the founder, her son Adnan, a Givelight board member, and Sister Noshaba Afzal and her husband Naeem. It is hard to encapsulate our journey as there are so many dimensions to it so I will focus on three things. Blessings, love, and synchronicity (as well as in brief why I went).
Baraka: Blessings Surrounding the Home and Journey
As we arrived at the Givelight Foundation Cape Town Home, a sense of tranquility and joy filled the air. The home radiated with a unique aura of baraka, blessing all those who entered its doors. From the moment we stepped inside, it became evident that this space was more than just a physical shelter; it was a sanctuary that nurtured the souls of the orphan girls who will call it their home. The essence of baraka could be felt in every corner, reminding us of the divine grace that had brought us all together for this noble cause.
In addition to this, Sister Dian reminded us in her remarks at the opening, that it has been a seven-year-long journey to get to this home. I don’t know all the steps but one of the major ones was that Givelight after a long search was able to purchase a piece of land. Salma Wadee, who is an architect in Johannesburg, and her team worked on some amazing plans for the new GL Home. Once the costs were factored in, they realized that both from a time and money standpoint, it wasn’t practical even if they scaled the size of the project down. That’s when the local GL team headed by Dr. Yusuf Arieff started to search for an already-built property. And this is where Baraka comes in again.
All of us visitors came from California and specifically the San Francisco Bay Area. For those not familiar with it, also known as Silicon Valley. It is one of the most, if not the most expensive area in the United States, and I am referring to real estate prices. The median price of a home is a couple of Million Dollars. That’s a lot of moolah! So the team acquired this former hotel/guest house in an upper-middle-class area with an amazing view at half the estimated cost to build. There is a Musallah on the top floor, and the view from sunrise, day, and sunset is truly amazing. You cannot put a price on this and Allah has given it as a gift to the orphans of Cape Town.