Volunteers help pilgrims get jabbed up
MUSLIM Pilgrims were given the opportunity to get vaccinated before heading off to Saudi Arabia.
The Council of British Hajjis (CBH) held a vaccination clinic for locals going on the Islamic pilgrimage of Umrah at the Al-Hikmah centre on Track Road in Batley. For £25 pilgrims could get a meningococcal vaccination which is a mandatory visa requirement.
The clinic was run with the help of a large army of volunteers. The CEO and founder of CBH, Rashid Mogradia said: “I would say there are about 20 [volunteers] today at this clinic. This is the beauty of the service that we provide it’s all volunteer based, it’s all community based.
“Doctors give up their time; nurses give up their time because it’s a dedication to a cause for the almighty Allah at the end of the day. That’s why we’ve been able to offer the service at cost neutral.”
One of those volunteering was Mohammed Bala a Dentist from Dewsbury. He said: “I just want to thank CBH for providing this great service for the community. The local doctors and GPs obviously they have to charge a fee, but they’re charging anywhere between £35 and £75 in some places. I think to have that service for £25 is fantastic.”
Speaking of the importance of getting vaccinated before flying out, Bala said: “because a lot of people are gathered over in one place, meningitis is a big risk.
“So it’s very important for them to get vaccinated so that they avoid having any complications while they’re there, so that they can be fit and well to do their pilgrimage and have no health problems.”
Local resident Shamima Ravat came with her whole family to be vaccinated at the clinic, she said she chose the clinic because “It’s more convenient.”
She went onto add, “My brother has organised the whole trip for the family so he’s brought us here rather than a GP and I think it’s supposed to be cheaper as well.”
Mogradia said: “This is the first clinic, one of four that we’re going to be running in Dewsbury Batley, we’re expecting about the 150 mark, that’s without a single advert – all done online.
“It’s a testament to the hard work that went in last year for when we did around six clinics in Yorkshire and the confidence that people have in this cost mutual service, local GPs are charging quite a bit. We provide it for next to nothing, people come in their hundred’s and they get jabbed up.”