Friday, October 14, 2005


HAMILTON - The death toll from Pakistan's worst earthquake is stirring the hearts and purse strings of people worldwide. Locally, the Islamic Center of Greater Cincinnati in West Chester Township has established an earthquake relief fund.

Contributions will be funneled to the Association of Pakistani Physicians of North America, based in Chicago. Dr. Rashid M. Khan, a member of the local mosque and the APPNA, said the agency will effectively distribute donations. "They have a very long record in charitable work," said Khan. "They have people working on the ground there. By not going through the government there is no red tape. Our goal is to reach real people, reduce the overhead, get the money and food directly to the people.

"This will get the money to the people as fast as possible, at least 90 cents on the dollar," he said.Khan - who lost 19 extended family members, as well as former medical school classmates, in the disaster - is hoping the community will be generous. The APPNA plans to send financing to the area Friday.Donations will continue to be collected through the Muslim holy period of Ramadan, said Shikila Ahmad of the Islamic center, located at 8092 Plantation Drive. No collection goal has been set. . .Donations are tax deductible. They will be collected at Friday Prayers and throughout the month of Ramadan at various mosque functions. Donations may also be given to the "Islamic Center Pakistan Earthquake Fund" at any Fifth Third Bank location.


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