Muslim Aid joined the North Kensington community for a day of commemoration, mourning and solidarity on the second anniversary of the Grenfell Tower tragedy.
Many of the 72 who lost their lives in the fire were Muslims, and Muslim Aid has been involved with the Grenfell recovery from day one, when our staff and volunteers aided the massive community relief effort. Since then we have worked with local and larger organisations alike on distributing food, money and resources; providing advocacy and counselling; and making recommendations on how the response to this tragedy and future ones could be improved.
Commemorations were given following Friday prayers at the Al Manaar Mosque, which opened its doors to fire survivors and provided vital support to those affected in the aftermath of the fire. Mayor of London Sadiq Khan, police and fire minister Nick Hurd, and Muslim Aid CEO Jehangir Malik addressed worshippers.
Muslim Aid staff also attended the memorial service at St Helen’s Church, around the corner from the tower, and community wreath-laying and tree planting ceremonies. At the end of the day, thousands joined an expanded version of the Grenfell community’s monthly silent march. The march was both an opportunity for quiet remembrance, and to those who attended to affirm their commitment to achieving justice and closure for the Grenfell families.
Muslim Aid has also been using the occasion of the second anniversary to campaign for proper resources for the Grenfell recovery after the official response fell short and community groups rose to fill the gap. This includes community mental health provision that is tailored to linguistic, religious, cultural, physical and psychological needs is essential, and a recovery that accounts fully for the North Kensington community and its diversity.