OPEN DAY”  (back row, from left) Superintendent district officer Ron Van Saane, Father Peter Tonti, Imam Mohammed Akram Buksh, CQUniversity vice chancellor Scott Bowman, Senior Sergeant Ashley Hull. Front: Mojib Ullah, Cr Rose Swadling, Binil Kattiparambil and Emma Dalton.
OPEN DAY” (back row, from left) Superintendent district officer Ron Van Saane, Father Peter Tonti, Imam Mohammed Akram Buksh, CQUniversity vice chancellor Scott Bowman, Senior Sergeant Ashley Hull. Front: Mojib Ullah, Cr Rose Swadling, Binil Kattiparambil and Emma Dalton. Madeline McDonald

Mosque opens doors and opens minds to diversity

HUNDREDS of pairs of shoes filled the foyer of the Rockhampton Mosque on Saturday, an indication that National Mosque Open Day is becoming bigger every year.

More than 200 people filled the local mosque from wall to wall over the weekend to share in delicious food, a guided tour of the mosque and to ask local Muslims questions about their culture and religion.

Mustafa Elkhishin from the Islamic Society of Central Queensland said the local Islamic community was happy with the turnout and the response from the community.

"There were some good questions brought up and that's what the whole Q&A is about; to get an understanding of what Islam is about and dispel some of the myths," he said.

"We're really happy with the response and we've received really positive feedback. Understanding and open dialogue I think is key and these events are really important because the Muslim community here in Rockhampton is a large community and we're proud to be members of Rockhampton and the wider CQ region."

Imam Mohammed Akram Buksh speaks to the crowd.
Imam Mohammed Akram Buksh speaks to the crowd. Madeline McDonald

Imam Mohammed Akram Buksh from Brisbane was a guest speaker at the event and shared many personal stories of how he and his family are sometimes treated as a result of being Muslim.

"My wife can no longer go shopping on her own because last time someone spat at her and threw coffee on her," he told the crowd of people.

Mohammed said he was hoping events such as National Mosque Open Day helped bring the communities together to find peace.

"I think it was very successful and I think our aims and objectives have been achieved, we hope that the follow-up will be positive," he said.

"The main aim of these open days is to create understanding and address misconceptions and to come to the conclusion that at the end of the day, regardless of our faith, our race and where we come from, we are all Australian."

Councillor Rose Swadling said she had heard positive feedback from members of the community who attended.

"It's about inclusive communities and an open day like this dispels the myths people have and lets us all understand that we are all one, we are all one community," Cr Swadling said.

"It's been a wonderful response because people have really been able to ask the questions they want and get a better understanding and I think it was a great opportunity to break down the walls."


Extra demerits for using phones while driving

Extra demerits for using phones while driving

Drivers using phones illegally will get an extra demerit point.

Wildcats win on penalties

Wildcats win on penalties

Byron Bay wins grand final shootout.

Rams strike form for finals

Rams strike form for finals

Rams and Rovers Match up again

Local Partners